God has a sense of humor.
I created an event on my FaceBook page. I do it every year.
Please join me in praying for Christian Unity during the Week of Christian Unity, which begins January 18, 2012.
I clicked on most of my FaceBook friends and sent out the invitations.
The "Accepts Invitations" started rolling in.
I just checked how many have agreed to pray. I had a personalized note from Penny. She said that she would pray throughout the week, even though she has to work.
Penny made me smile.
A few decades ago, Penny and I were in 8th grade together in a little middle school in Riceville, Iowa. I remember the day we were in art class. She was standing with her friends and I was sitting with my friends. Our friends were not the same. She was from McIntire, and I was from rural Riceville. She was a bit rowdy. I was a goody two shoes.
For some reason, she thought I was talking about her that day. I wasn't. But she thought I was, and that created a chemical reaction. When we lined up to leave art class that day, she accused me of talking about her to my friends. I told her I hadn't been talking about her at all.
She didn't believe me.
Really, I wasn't.
Yes, you were. (shove)
Without thinking, I shoved back, and wham. Preacher's daughter and McIntire girl fight in the doorway of the art room.
The two of us keep swinging until the short, overweight English teacher came out of her room and yelled, "That's enough!"
We stop fighting immediately. I burst into tears. Penny runs out of the school and holes up at her grandmother's house a block away. I don't remember very much after that.
Fastforward through a few decades, and there I am, sitting at my computer, smiling.
Penny has agreed to pray that the Christian world will be one. At peace. In accord. Strife ended. All on the same page. No misunderstandings.
Let the past be the past.
This is the kind of irony I love.
God, you have such a great sense of humor.
Penny, God bless you for praying - and for inviting me to be your Facebook friend. Blessed are the peacemakers. That's you, Penny!
And that's every one of us that says count me in. I'll pray. "Father, make us one. As you and the Son are one... so that the world will know that You have sent the Son of God to a crazy, mixed-up world."
But a world that is certainly worth redeeming. Now, go and invite everyone to join us in prayer, even the kid you fought with in 8th grade!
Amen, and amen!