Imagine this. You have been invited to a party. Actually, it’s more than a party — it’s the biggest bash in the history of parties. Everyone you have ever loved or known will be there. However, you are not sure you should go.
You might think that you don’t have the right clothes or you might not fit in. However, something calls you and draws you to the party. You still have doubts as to whether you should attend, but you go anyway.
As you approach the door, you can hear the music and people laughing. You can even hear the host, although you are not familiar with his name, which made the invitation that much more awkward. Then, a terrifying thought comes to your mind: “What if I am too late?”
You muster enough courage to knock on the door. To your surprise, the host opens the door, throws His arms around you, kisses you on the cheek, and says, “I am glad you are here! It would not have been the same without you!”
As you enter, everyone you meet greets you in the same way. Whatever fears or concerns you had regarding being late have disappeared. As you look around, you see there is plenty of food left and the band is beginning to play another set.
What I have just described is how I imagine Easter. Even though Easter seems like a distant memory as we prepare for summer, it is still worthy of reflection.
In the church we often talk about “C and E” people — people who only come to church on Christmas and/or Easter (or at Salem it is “CESS” — Christmas, Easter and Sausage Supper).
I often wonder about those who stayed home because they felt they would not fit in or they did not have everything figured out. Let me say to them: It’s not too late! My suggestion is for you to go a church — any church — and like buying a new suit or dress, try it on and see how it fits. If it doesn’t, then go to the next church on your list. I am confident that you will find one that suits your needs.
The Good News is that our host, Jesus Christ, will always be there to open the door, throw His arms around you, kiss you on the cheek, and say: “I am glad you are here! It would not have been the same without you!”
It’s never too late!
Rev. Jerry Amiri, senior pastor
Salem United Church of Chirst, Alhambra