What a busy weekend its been.
Several weeks ago I was invited to organise the prayer area inside the Churches Together tent at Moorgreen show (if you check my blog for last August you can read about the 07 show). Like everything else you don’t really know what to expect until you get the opportunity to be involved. Its one thing looking from the outside but once you’re responsible for something it has a whole different feel.
I spent some time planning out a complicated labyrinth, but only once I got there did I discover the vital elements like tables, screened off area and the positioning of the area were not what I’d hoped for.
We were positioned with the children’s work on one side, the bookstall on the other and the musicians area right outside our entrance; none of which was conducive to quiet, meditative prayer ! Still with the support of Lesley (Circuit Administrator) tables were found, and with the help of a lady called Sally (from the Baptist Church) plants and bales of hay helped to delineate the area.
We had pebbles for water, sand to feel, two water features, thank you notelets for prayer, Bibles, chairs and the Son newspaper (a Christian paper). Free copies of Marks Gospel were given away.
Saturday morning was spent from 8.00 a.m. setting up and preparing. Saturday p.m. was spent reprinting new directions, instructions etc to take into account the necessary changes we’d made.
Sundaywas a long and tiring day. At the showground for 8.00 a.m., prayers at 8.30 a.m. and the ground opened to the public at 9.00 a.m. at 10.00 a.m. I’m off to Selston to take morning worship and then back to the ground by 12.00 Noon. at 2.00 p.m. I’m off again to Crich for afternoon worship. This couldn’t have been achieved without the wonderful help of Adrian and Lynn from the Ripley circuit who kindly came up and covered the area for me, alongside the aforementioned Sally.
Having said that, with all the rushing around I found myself quite tired by the end of the day.
Bank Holiday Monday came and again I found myself at the showground for 8.00 a.m. with prayers at 8.30 a.m. Once again the public entered at 9.00 a.m. Whereas Sunday had been a small but steady trickle of people coming past the tent, on Monday it was more of a deluge coming into the tent at times; especially when the Punch and Judy or the magic was on. At these times you couldn’t even get near the entrance to the prayer area for children and parents.
The childrens work, organised by Lesley and her husband David, seemed to be constantly busy and it was a delight to see so many children making masks, cards and all manner of things to go onto two huge collages featuring the creation stories.
Music today was supplied by the Langley Mill worship band who as usual were very good. The prayer team for Monday was my Alison, Vikki, Averil and Alison Wood. It makes such a difference having people around you. My thanks to both the Sunday team and the Monday team.
We closed the area at about 5.00 p.m. and by the time we got packed up and home it was after 6.00 p.m. 12 hours of standing ! Home for a well earned evening of mind numbing relaxation – we went to see “Mama Mia” at the pictures as we knew it wouldn’t take much thinking about.
Was it worth it ? Theres a difficult question. Not many came into the prayer area despite the huge numbers a the show and the large numbers that came through our tent. However I feel the important thing was that there was a place to stop and reflect and for those who did come in that was important. I feel that in future years the organisers need to think more carefully about the layout of the tent, what is needed and what isn’t. Perhaps a seperate area for quiet, reflective space would be valuable, or even just a gazebo within the main tent. Still there are plenty of things to contemplate and a year within which to do it.
All in all I’m pleased we did it and feel that Gods Kingdom was glorified by it.
Next year ? Well, lets see shall we ?