On Tuesday night Kelly, Angie, and I went to see Beth Moore teach live at her home church, First Baptist Houston. I had been two times before,but had never attempted to sit in the front section. This time however, I wanted to get there earlier than normal in order to sit in the front section. We waited in line outside one of the two main doors for about 45 minutes. At one point I noticed Beth's two daughters standing behind the resource table and I wondered what it must be like to be Beth Moore's daughters...to know that for everyone who adores your Mom there is someone who criticizes and detests her. How does one balance and make sense of such vast range feelings towards someone you love?
Right before the doors opened to walk inside the sanctuary some ladies from Beth's staff came walking by explaining that there were two lines and to please be courteous and walk. Really??? I knew immediately that there must be a reason for these directions...to be courteous..to walk..to take it slowly??? And then as the line began to move forward it all became clear as I heard a lady (who had come to Bible Study, mind you) say "this is crap" as she bumped into me, and my broken wrist, and cut between Kelly and I. Wow, I thought to myself...
As we walked into the hustle and bustle of the sanctuary I began scanning for a place to sit. The first two rows were reserved for staff, totally understandable, but as we approached each seemingly empty row we we found entire rows saved with Bibles and coats. The "rule" is that you can save 2 seats...it seemed however that Bible Stidy ladies are exceptions to these rules. Once we found a mostly empty row we began selecting our seats only to have someone step between Angie and Kelly and plop herself down into one of the seats. We just walked further down the row and eventually found three seats.
I've been pondering this entire spectacle of rude behavior since Tuesday night. I highly doubt that these ladies run into church every Sunday to claim the best seat, or save an entire row for their besties. And I wonder if they even really listen to the message that Beth gives. Just a few weeks ago the lesson was on James 2:1-7 Beth taught about placing ouselves higher than those around us. She said that FAITH and FAVORTISM don't mix. And she made a a strong point about saving seats for friends, but pushing others out of the way in order to exalt those we find worthy.
On Thursday, while surfing favorite blogs, I came across Beth Moore's eldest daughter Amanda's blog where she wrote an entry about a hurtful encounter with a lady on Tuesday night, at the same Bible study I was referring to above.
In reflecting on these events it made me examine why I do Bible study. If all that we hear and read just builds up as knowledge and doesn't transform us into Godly people then it's all for show. Part of the reason I have gone to see Beth live is just that...to see her cute self live. I admire and respect her, but the real reason is that I LEARN about the Bible from her and in learning more and applying that knowledge I am transformed.