I’m thinking I may have to create a category titled “The Older I Get” because the conversations in my head seem to be landing there a lot these days.  For example, the older I get the more I ponder why we clap when we do and whether our choice of times to clap is appropriate.

This morning in church our pastor veered from his notes and made a Biblical statement about the sanctity of life.  He was careful to point out that his statement was not political; rather, it was taken straight from the pages of God’s word.  And it was.  And I was so proud of him because not many pastors are brave enough to go there these days.  It was refreshing.  And I said, “amen!” along with several others.

And then someone started clapping – loudly.  And suddenly I felt uncomfortable.  I have no idea who started the clapping and, even if I did, I would not presume to make a judgement call on the heart motive of the clapper.  It may have simply been their way of saying “amen!”

In the deep of me, this is what I thought.  “Someone(s) here has been through the horror of abortion.  Perhaps they have asked God to forgive them and they have been forgiven because that is what happens – even with abortion.  And perhaps the sudden clapping in a place where there is generally no clapping during a sermon will bring a new level of condemnation for them.  And if they feel condemned will they ever feel free to share their story?  After all, their story could change some one else’s life and maybe even save the life of an unborn child.  The shared story may even be a brand new place of freedom in their own life.  So, should I clap along because I really am so thankful that FINALLY what breaks the heart of God is being spoken out loud or is my amen enough?  Or is there even a difference between the two?”

So there is my question for today.  To clap or not to clap?