We get a perspective from where we sit that others might not. I was thinking about this as I sat at the visuals desk at the back of Cedar (the big room) around 9:30am this Sunday morning.

Abbeystead BluebellsI’m sure that there are many who would be surprised by the different people who are already milling about at that time.

The band are already there and practice is already well underway. This isn’t the only time that the band have practiced the songs, they’ve already spent time in the week.

The person who is leading the service is already there too. They are checking that everything is OK with everyone. They’ve already been thinking about this service for some time. They’ve made sure the band know the plan for the songs. They’ve checked with a few people about the notices that need highlighting. They’ve considered prayers, introductions, welcome, closing and all sorts of other things that make a service a place where people can come close to God.

The person on the sound desk is already there making adjustments so that the sound is at the right level for the singers, the vocalists, the speakers and those listening.

I’m there on the visuals desk lining up the songs, checking and rechecking that we’ve got the right ones and the right order. There’s a video and that’s been checked too (people have spent hours in the week getting it ready). The presentation for the sermon is also checked. The projector and televisions are all turned on and we are ready to go.

The signers are setting up. They’ve already looked through the material that they’ve been provided with from the leader and the preacher earlier in the week.

There are stewards around too. They’re putting the cones out at the front of church and making sure that everything is in order. They’re getting ready to greet people and hand out the notices (which someone has edited, reviewed, printed and folded). They’ve set up the stage with the screen for the signers and made sure that the front is clean and tidy.

The junior church team are already there setting up ready for the children to come through at the appropriate time. They’ve also been preparing in the week so that they can communicate in a way that is relevant to the children.

The team that are doing refreshments are also there making coffee ready to go into flasks for the early rush after the service. They’re setting up plates of biscuits, jugs of milk, tubs of sugar and mountains of cups.

On a normal Sunday the band for ignite would also be practicing in Cypress along with their visuals, sounds people and catering team. This week the young people are sitting in with the adults.

The preacher is also there making sure that the presentation is OK and getting a microphone fitted. They’ve prayed for and prepared the message that they believe God wants them to bring. On most weeks they’d be bringing a message in a series that itself has been prayed for and prepared.

Church is a community activity – a community of servants. We are very blessed to have so many willing servants.

Thank you servants. Thank you Lord.