The Church Near Muldoon

There is something about old and abandoned buildings that stirs my imagination and ignites my curiosity. Whenever I venture down Texas backroads, I always look for old houses and buildings — the ones that have been long abandoned and are slowly being reclaimed by the elements. One structure in particular beckoned me to pull off the road just outside of Muldoon, a tiny community with a population of a little more than a hundred residents. It was an old church building with only the vertical section of a cross remaining on the steeple.
Old Church Building - Muldoon Tx
IMG_1907As I made my way through the dry overgrowth, I noticed that the front door of the building was open. I grew up in a small town in the days when church buildings remained open all day and, in some cases, all night. In fact, I never recall the door to my childhood home ever being locked when I was growing up. In all of the years I lived at home I never had a house key. At any rate, I was glad to find an open door when I approached the old church building.
Muldoon Church InteriorOnce inside the building, I noticed the few remaining pews on either side of the red-carpeted aisle. Everything in the building was covered with the dandruff of decay. I paused for a moment and tried to imagine what things must have looked like when the building was new and wondered how many brides had walked down the short distance to the altar. I had to remind myself that this old building was not the church, only the building where the church had once met for a season.
Muldoon Church QuarterliesThe signs that this had once been a place where people studied the Scriptures were evident. Old Sunday School quarterlies littered the floor, some with the fading names of the members written on the covers. Once again, I could not help but wonder about those who had studied those lessons and perhaps made some life-changing decisions in this old country church building. In a way it did not matter so much that these old lesson books were strewn on the floor because what really matters is what the folks who studied here carried away in their hearts.
Muldoon Church Pulpit ViewStanding in the pulpit and looking toward the pews, I wondered about those who had stood in that same spot over the years. How many sermons and weddings and funerals had taken place there? What about special seasonal observances or musical presentations? The history of what happened in that building is lost to all but those who worshiped there. But, without question, so much must have happened in this humble little building throughout the years.
Muldoon Church ExitAfter lingering for a while I made my way slowly down the aisle toward the exit. Once again the open door beckoned me out toward the world at large, the place where we are to live out our faith. And again I wondered about how many people might have left this place a little different than when they walked in, perhaps more determined to love God and love people. That’s really the way we should always leave our places of worship — changed for the better, a little more in love with God, and ready and willing to serve others.

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