Today I was in Donaghadee in between the morning service and our youth organisations this evening.... cos I decided to make my Sunday that extra bit busier by driving for an hour and 15 minutes there and an hour and 15 minutes back as well as spending an hour and a half there. However there was an actual reason for going: my friend's little girl was being baptised and having a bit of a birthday bash at the same time and I was so excited about it because I don't get to see this friend often. I was there on my own, which I didn't mind much. I had planned to head back home shortly after the service, but the "tea ladies" of Shore Street Presbyterian were sitting beside me and poked me on the shoulder as soon as the service was finished and asked who I was, where I had come from, how I knew my friend and was I coming for the tea and coffee upstairs. Well Jean and Joan ushered me up and had me sat down and had found out all sorts about me, made sure I had a cup of tea, some sandwiches and a traybake.
It was so lovely for me as a stranger to the church, for them to not just spend their time with the people they knew but to also invite me to their group for tea and a chat. I wouldn't have minded going for tea or coffee by myself but to be given a "personal" invite and to be made to feel like I was already a friend made me feel very welcome.
So my prayer for today is that every church has a Jean and a Joan like these 2 who make people feel welcome and like they've always been there.