Last week’s story from the Hebrew Bible (2 Samuel 6:1-5, 12b-19) featured a lively communal dance party as the Ark of the Covenant, God’s dwelling place, was carried up to Jerusalem. Rousing music of lyres, harps, tambourines, castanets and cymbals inspired King David and his thirty-thousand strong leadership team to dance as an act of grateful faithfulness to the Lord. (If you missed All Saints’ own Sunday stomp-romp on July 4th—replete with Simon on the cymbals and trumpet, organ, and piccolo—you can watch it here!)
Whenever music sets us moving, glorifying God in our bodies, the Spirit sings. The sound of brass in church has always seemed such a Spirit-song; it regularly gives me goosebumps. On the best days, I can leave off feeling sheepish when the Spirit shows up, daring me to dance because worship, at its best, deepens my trust in God and helps me lean into the joy that flows in our lives through the Spirit. Out of gratitude and thanksgiving for God’s wondrous love, our bodies pick up new dance-moves the Spirit is teaching. And that movement feels like pure joy.
The Holy Spirit had a joyful surprise in store for All Saints’ this summer. Benjamin Haden, a rising senior at Davidson College, decided to share his time, energy, and talents with our community, through a ministerial internship sponsored by his school. Ben has been a trumpeter since middle school (he laughs when he recalls his earlier logic, thinking the trumpet would be the “easiest” instrument on account of its having only three valves!). If you’re on the block during these next five weeks, you will have opportunities to hear Ben trumpeting in Sunday services. Beyond the musical gifts he brings to worship, Ben’s heart for creation and for building community equip him to embrace the variety of roles he’ll be exploring this summer.
Ben’s presence reminds us and the wider church of the unexpected blessings that young adults in ministerial leadership freely share with us. When you see him around All Saints’, please help us welcome Ben during this creative season of learning and growing together. I am excited to witness how we open our hearts and habits to the joyful beats the Spirit will spark through his ministry among us.
Trusting the Spirit to magnify our joy,