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How God Has Worked in My Life: Unwelcome Seperation
By Michaelyn Sloan

Heads down, my husband, youngest son, and I made our way toward the church that windy, grayish morning. The parking lot, void of any humanity, reflected our tardiness - due to an emergency telephone call as we were leaving home. The lot also showed evidence of the on-going construction taking place on our church. Stacks of lumber, piled amidst gray swirls of concrete dust created a bleak scene.

"Where's the entrance?" my son yelled back. There he stood in front of a plywood plank that had previously led to an opening that allowed us access into the church building. My husband motioned to our son to go to the north side of the building, but it was immediately obvious that no entry was available there either. The two of them agreed to search the rear of the building as I stood there waiting.

I moved toward the basement door knowing this was a possible option, but I dreaded the thought of having to walk through the sanctuary as Liturgy was going on. Nevertheless, I turned the knob. It was locked!! I tried once again. The wind had died down considerably, and suddenly I heard voices singing, "Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God."

Suddenly, I thought, "I want to be there! I want to be among those voices! I want to be celebrating the Divine Liturgy! But I can't find my way in! Emotions of emptiness, and confusion threaded through those thoughts.

I turned the doorknob again. This time it opened! Somehow the door had locked shut behind the last person that had entered, but someone had heard my attempt to open it. Just then, my husband and son appeared.

"Liturgy is in the basement because of the construction," one of them remarked. "I know!" I responded with a sense of relief.

As we tiptoed down the basement steps in single file, I was struck by what had just transpired. With one more turn of a doorknob, and a few steps, I had passed from a dreary, sunless parking lot into a room radiant with people who formed the Body of Christ. On this dreary, spring Sunday, God had shown me what it was like to be separated from the Body of Christ.

I drew a breath, and joined in the singing as the choir completed the Beatitudes, "Rejoice and be exceedingly glad. For great is your reward in Heaven!"

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