Take me to church

by the Night Writer

We may have found a church here in Prague. Of course, we couldn’t do it by just looking in the Yellow Pages or checking Trip Adviser. Setting out to “find” a church strikes me as a rather tedious process, at least if you’re trying to do it in your own understanding. You know, make a list of your important doctrines, visit multiple churches and services, judge the fellowship and donuts, and try to find a pastor that tickles your ears in the way they like to be tickled. Or you can trust God where He leads and listen with your spirit.

Last Wednesday night we decided to get dinner at a Christmas market. I prefer the look and feel of Old Town Square to the modern and stretched out Wenceslas Square, but Wenceslas was closer so we went there. As we approached the statue of King Wenceslas we could hear someone proclaiming about something in Czech to a small crowd through a loud-speaker. Since Wenceslas Square is a center for protests and demonstrations we were curious about what he was talking about but didn’t think much about it. As we were eating the Reverend Mother said, “It sounds as if he’s preaching, but I haven’t heard anything that sounded like ‘Jesus’ in what he’s saying.” A couple of minutes later, though, the speaker switched to English, and he was definitely speaking about Jesus and sharing his testimony.

We went over to investigate and met Petr, a  young man in his 30s who is with a group that is witnessing in front of the Wenceslas statue on Wednesday and Saturday nights, just a couple of blocks from the “sex district” of Prague. Petr told us of the people from all over the world – including Africa and the Middle East – who have spontaneously shown up to participate in their crusade. You could tell he was humbled by the experience. We chatted for awhile and told him we were looking for a local church and he provided a list of churches that were supporting the outreach in the square.

The Rev. Mum checked these out on a map and selected a church that looked to be the easiest to get to and didn’t involve a lot of walking. Though it took a tram, a subway and a bus to get there, the bus stopped directly in front of the church, so that’s where we went on Sunday. All we really new about the church, International Church of Prague, was it’s location but we felt right at home with the people we met and with the worship service, and we could see from their announcements where the heart of the church is and how they are engaging with the community around them. There was a guest speaker yesterday, a young man with a music ministry. Specifically, a rap music ministry, and he shared one of his music videos (see below) before he started his message. For all the rap trappings, this fella was definitely “Old School”, working in quotes and teaching from Charles Spurgeon and C.S. Lewis into his sermon about the nature of God’s mercy.

Afterwards we met the pastor and his wife and several other members who approached us. It felt good all around, and researching their web page later showed that while we may differ on a couple of points, their mission and heart is for unity and relationship (which was what I sensed in talking to the people we met). Besides, we’re called to fellowship so we can grow and be part of a body of believers, not look for reasons (or excuses) to stay away. We’re about to leave town for a few weeks but we’ll be back to Prague in January and will visit again before we return to the States. Tiger Lilly can share her own impressions and leadings about the church, but it seemed as if she liked it and would feel at home here.

Verse One:
La vida seems sombre, at least melancholic,
Not even hyperbolic when I say my generation’s fathered by Panasonic,
Electronic substitutions,
In place of formerly universal institutions,
In the midst of confusion,
The heart longs for your presence
Perhaps unaware but it’s searching transcendence,
And Material makes for an inferior foundation
Excuse me but X is missing from this equation
0+0 don’t equal civilisation,
Ya theories need room for author of creation,
We need to know our maker in order to find our purpose,
Cause there’s much more to man than what’s seen on the surface,
More than what the money in our purse can purchase,
Calvary ripped the curtain
Draw near and worship,
Son I carry the flame,
Cause he carried my blame,
It ain’t time enough to tarry to I’m
So I’m repping his name.

All our lives are shaded
The whole world is shaded
Creation groans
We long to be emancipated
Brokenness, eyes filled with hopelessness
Hypocrisy, we’re desperate for his holiness
All our lives are shaded,
The whole world is shaded,
Creation groans
We long to be emancipated
From this body of sin
From the darkness within
I’m clinging to his cross
And I’m walking with him

Verse Two:
Daily I feel the force,
Of the brokenness of our families
The affects of divorce
We need to shine our lights even if it’s like morse code,
Transcode the message to the youth on the streets and the road,
That the son of God strode through our planet,
Now the heart’s his abode,
But inside there’s a hole,
And left to our devices
We’re chained to our vices
Fiends snatch devices
And chop coke up in slices
I’m wondering what’s the price
That we’re willing to pay
We sell what makes us human, kill if you get in the way
Little hope on the horizon
Few heroes to fix our eyes on
Women sell their corpus
To men with their wives home,
Even the church is marked by hypocrisy
A mockery of how shes meant to function properly
We’re but a shadow of what God intended,
But I look forward to the day when it will all be mended.

Verse Three:
I feel the lightness to our life on earth,
A dearth of endurance from our birth to the hearse,
And what I’m meaning is its value is seeming
When we step into the real this will feel as if dreaming
From film and prose, to poems it shows,
We’re searching for the source of beauty from which our art flows
The heart knows, But when all is relative,
we lack the foundation to form meta-narrative,
Though in comparative wealth, our purpose has been stolen in a manner of stealth,
Without God’s authority all that’s left is the self
Look for personal fulfillment leave the truth on the shelf
We’re far too easily pleased,
Like children happy playing in the slum when offered holidays in the sun,
We need gravity,
I’m looking for that higher reality
And Christ is the one who can bridge the disparity

One thought on “Take me to church

  1. This proves the Spirit will prevail. The active Spirit is found in many disguises.
    Glad you found a church ‘home’ for the time being. Jeff just picked up on facebook some sad news. Head on collision on 44 with a car crossing median. Dr. Bonnie Ranney and Dr. Mark Ranney and an 85 yr old passenger were killed. Mark is Royal and Merle Raney’s son (Royal retired and Mark took over his practice) Bonnie was a GP that we went to and was Bob’s doctor until the past year. The 85 year old was Bonnie’s mom.

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