Archive for May 15th, 2009

I asked my son if he was ever bored in our new church and he said yes.  To that I said, “good.”  Why would I say such a thing?  Because in our former church we were overstimulated with entertainment.   My son understood exactly what I was saying.  Being human, we might feel bored (in our weak bodies) when the truth is repeated to us.  We might have to stretch through and work to listen.  This is NOT a signal that the pastor is doing something wrong and needs to enterain.  If I am bored, I do not need a new and catchy song or a lazer light show.  I need the truth.  I need Christ.  I need the gospel.  If I am bored, I need to examine my heart.  I have time to think and examine my heart.  If it’s all about a theme, all about the great music to make me emotional, all about some false cause (that may sound good) then I can be distracted from truth of my condition.  At least if I’m bored, no pastor had to compromise the message.  The problem is with me and not the church.  This is NOT to say that we cannot be bored with a lie.  I know I became quite bored in a very agitated way with my church once I could see the real problems for what they are.  And I must admit now in the new church I’m actually not bored.  But if I do become bored I will not fret.  If the truth is preached, it doesn’t matter how I feel about it, I am glad to get the truth. 

Of course, what I wrote above is just my own thoughts.


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Going through the gospel of John as a congregation at our new church continues to contradict our former church.  Weekly, my husband and I will have at least one (if not many) sideways knowing glances with one eyebrow up.  First there was the reference to what the entire book is written for.  “These are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the son of God…”  John wasn’t written to have us interpret each and every detail with mystery.  No mystery, straight forward “you must be born again.”  Each week we hear the events as John records them, and how the people reacted to Jesus, and what Jesus said and did.  No new meanings applied, just the plain facts based on scripture.  We might move to a later part of John or to another gospel to show the importance of this or that scripture or the cultural significance of this or that  part of John…or we might move to the Old Testament when appropriate to bring up long standing traditions of men being broken or scripture being fulfilled, or to show why something was done this way in the days when Jesus walked the earth.   It’s refreshing to just read along with the pastor, and to not get “red flags” every so often causing a completely different reason for the sideways glances and eyebrows.  It’s nice to actually hear all about Jesus and not about the pastor’s kids and wife in a story to make whatever point.  It’ s nice not to hear canned stories and jokes that I can find immediately online in some other pastor’s sermons.  It”s nice to hear about the gospel  and not the plans of the church to build this or that.  No slick videos promoting the different ministries in the church or calls to give to the new building campaign, no calls to serve the emerging generation and to pass the baton.  No limited focus on families with babies or on youth.  So far, it appears the pastor and this new church are focused on Christ, Christian living as revealed in the gospels.  Quotes are almost always from the bible, and if they are from someone else they are always cited well.  I really cannot recall a quote from someone except John this past few months, but I’m not saying there hasnt’ been one…maybe quoting Piper or MacArthur?  I don’t have to go home and read up on strange authors or search out who the new speaker at our pulpit is (who came from out of town).  It’s just been our pastors at the pulpit.  There’s not a lot of  repetition of themes, no pounding us with the same terms and redefining them over and over again (like missional, transformation, etc).  There’s rarely a “new conference” or “retreat.”  Yes, they do have a men’s retreat coming up, but it’s not been overblown.  No promises that you’ll come back a completely new and improved husband and father.  It’s just a weekend away with speakers, the bible, and prayer.  And the sermons, they are longer.  Here’s church…pray, then song time with scripture reading.  Next sermon (again started with prayer and including scripture).  Prayer again then offering with instrumental music.  I think another song. Announcements.  Prayer…and that’s it.

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