Today is The Open Door’s 7th birthday.
Today there will be food and party mayhem, but Kylie and I are celebrating by staying home. Celebrating by honoring a value The Open Door holds dear: rest.
We are exhausted from working 50-hour weeks, and today is one of the few Sundays when neither of us is responsible for something during the service. So today we’re resting, pretending to be on a 24-hour vacation in our own home. (This post was written in advance, timed to go live during the church service.)
As I write this, I’m getting teary-eyed thinking about what The Open Door means to us–especially the people of the church. Three years ago, Kylie joined the church and was baptized outside in a hot tub in the October cold after an evening service. Six years ago, I moved to Pittsburgh and wasn’t sure if I would attend church at all… and then found The Open Door and its openness to doubt, yoga, Celtic Christianity, and rest.
At the time, The Open Door had just started meeting at the Union Project, a former church building on a corner where four neighborhoods touch. But a church is not about a building.
The people of The Open Door have taken me in when I was lonely, invited me to their homes for food, developed my taste for beer, encouraged my journey with yoga, trusted me with their infants, laughed and celebrated with me, picked me up from the airport, prayed for my Existentialist from afar, welcomed him into their midst, witnessed our growing relationship, performed our marriage, helped us move big oak furniture, and played whoknowshowmany board games with us. And we cry, laugh, and worship with them. Our lives overlap like countless Venn diagrams.
The people of The Open Door are why we love being part of the service most Sundays. We love seeking passageways to God with these people. Without them, the journey of knowing God in this life would be ever so much lonelier.
Happy Birthday, Open Door.