One of my favorite times of day in Zimbabwe is sunset.
Each evening, as the sky turned radiant hues of purple and red, Tecla and I would walk.
Each evening we went to the same place. We walked up the hill and around the corner, past the edge of town. We walked out into "the bush", which most would call the middle of no where, and we would have Church.
Most often it was just God, Tecla, and I. Sometimes we would stand perfectly still and silent and just listen. Most evenings we could hear the rushing water from the Victoria Falls, and often times we heard the sounds of elephants grazing in the distance.
The air would start to cool, and as we stood there, silently watching the sunset, I felt, saw, and heard the awesome God I serve all around me.
After silently worshipping, we would sing, pray, and share. God met us there in the bush, and as Tecla and I stood holding hands in the dirt and weeds, our Savior revealed himself in many ways.
Today I sat in a church, here in the U.S.A. My seat was comfortably padded. The air conditioner kept it wonderfully cool compared to the outside heat. I had an ice cold drink to enjoy from the coffee shop right outside the sanctuary doors.
During worship a handful of instruments were played, and words, lights, and pictures flashed around on the screen. I worshipped, but I found myself closing my eyes; not in prayer, but as to not be distracted.
A minute was given to shake hands with my brothers and sisters who I have never met. Brief and mostly empty hellos were muttered, and I found myself craving fellowship. There, among a crowded sanctuary of believers, I struggled to find depth.
I am not sure when the idea of comfort, convenience, and even extravagance became intertwined with church. Or when the focus went from deep to wide.
All I know is that when I left church today, I left craving Church.