All that was keeping them out was a thin sheet of stained glass.
That’s all that separated me from my congregation. How could I face them? We all saw the same thing, and now they wanted me to comfort them. What did I do when I can’t even comfort myself? I had dedicated most of my adult life to God and serving him, but was it a waste?
To be honest I wasn’t just sweating from the stress, a bottle of jack from my desk also contributed. A relic from my past life, before the Lord intervened, I always tried to keep it as a reminder and dedication to the Lord. To not be controlled by alcohol any more, but now my reminder was empty and thrown on the floor.
They’re knocking harder now, I can hear their cries for help, for guidance, for answers. Answers? Questions I had plenty, so did everyone else, but answers I was out of. “Please Pastor! Please let us in!” they shout. They can’t see me, crouched below the window, hands over my ears just trying to drown them out. Maybe they’ll go away? Just a couple more minutes and they’ll get bored. I mean, there’s more churches a couple blocks from here, even a synagogue down the street.
Minutes passed, soon it was an hour, then two, then three, I stopped counting. Still the entire time they persisted with their cries and with their pleas. I knew I had to face them. Even though my faith was in doubt, who was I to not help them with theirs? Maybe it’s the whiskey, but they needed me. Even if I didn’t believe the words coming from my mouth, they would. God or no God this herd needed their Shepherd.
I stood up, straightened my tie, wiped my eyes, and headed for the door. I had my doubts if this was the right thing to do or not, but then I looked up. Their faces were so happy and relieved to finally see me. Here I was a drunk, disheveled, pastor questioning his own faith, but they still looked to me for comfort. I unlocked the door.
“Come in, let us pray…”