Sunday, September 16, 2007
Big time of it this weekend.........
WHEW! It's been a busy weekend. I'm exhausted! Now into a crazy week.....I have several days this week with things to do. Hope one day I can "sleep in" HA! Something I used to do ALL the time.
Today was church....which was very inspiring I might add......the Pastor was awesome..and I loved the message and I LOVE the Pastor.....who just happens to be my husband :-)
I must say..and I am not being tainted in my view..not really.. but for those of you who don't know this or haven't heard him....Don is a very good Teacher/Preacher. He knows Gods word.
He is NOT like higly "visual" and doesn't use props in his sermons like many do.....which we have no problem with but it's just not who he is. Only on occasion has he ministered that way.
Nor is he the modern day "communicator." He doesn't do sermons geared at motivating the crowd to pump them up like at some large sales convention held at the Super Dome. That's not him either.
Don is an "Expository Preacher".....meaning just that....you "Expose" the scriptures.
He takes the scriptures...according to whatever message or text the Lord has given him to give as his message for that service and makes it literally "come alive" for you. It's totally NOT boring and you actually LEARN. How about that for a change??
He gives you background....cultural things..whatever, then he breaks it all down and tells you what the words are and mean and how it applies to you and me according to what the writer is saying to us. He makes it SO interesting. He knows so much and he gives you alot of understanding by how he teaches. I like that.
I have missed how he brings the Bible to life. I've missed it from many Preachers...because few do this type of teaching/preaching.....especially in the "Emerging Churches."
My husband is old school. That's the way he was taught and that is the way he will teach others....because that is how God wants him to be.
This is becoming a lost art too nowdays. Everything now has to be "short and sweet" and non religious. Well personally I hate religion myself and can't stand a person with a religious spirit. THAT drives me nuts. So I appreciate the "non religious" part to a limit. Comes a point though where....oh you know what I'm saying.
Just pick a lane people.....stand some ground.
There is a NEED for deeper teaching out there. I hear this all the time from people. I myself have missed it badly. However....it's not fashionable now and it's not what the big "crowd" is after either. Keep the scriptures to a minimum and tell lots of stories. That's the norm today. Let's keep'em happy and lets just make them feel good about themselves, no self evaluation here.
God give us some Charles Finney's. The Last Day's church needs a revival.
I've needed to hear things in the way that Don can state them. I don't know what it is but I know his heart and he is genuine and that makes a difference to me as well. I trust him and I trust what he is saying to the people and myself. If I didn't....believe me....I am his wife and I'm not a pew sitter nor a novice.
Plus......He's obviously not doing this for the money and never has and never WILL. That my friends is NOT who we are either.
In fact.......we receive nothing for this time we are giving of ours right now and we have to trek a good ways to get to this little church we are currently helping out. Not bragging here.
Just stating some facts.
Pray for this little A/G church.....they've lost their Pastor who they loved, it's a tiny congregation and it doesn't look like anyone wants the Pastor's position. There are a lot of "dynamics" involved in this body. It's a very traditional church, hymns only out of hymnals...which is fine, we don't get to hear enough hymns nowdays anyway.....but they could update a tad of course....and there are many, many other factors involved in this church too.
Probably the biggest issue is... there is no money to help keep the church running. That's a hard thing.
The last Pastor probably nearly starved. Although I think he worked a job. It's not easy to be a "bi-vocational Pastor" though...it's very hard in fact. I know people that do it and or have done it.
I totally respect Men and Women of God that do this on a weekly basis and receive nothing but the blessings of God. It does show me that they aren't in it for the glory. Besides there is none when you have to scrub the toilets and mow the grass yourselves...and all else that comes along with serving a small church...PLUS try to raise a family.....been there done that.
People think ministry is some "Glam" thing...it's not. Not for the little guys out there. The "non celebrities" who will never make it in the "whose who" books of modern church society.
My heart goes out to those people. Because they usually have nothing to operate on.
Try to keep the doors open and the roof from leaking and the A/C on and the Heater on with no budget so to speak of. You have to have great trust in God, to not only pay YOUR bills but to also pay the churches and the people's too probably....not easy my friends.
Yet they go onward......and this happens all over America and all over the world.
Can you imagine being a Pastor in the Appalachian Mountains...or the poor areas of the Mississippi Delta..or South Louisiana???
Maybe even wherever this big ol' teapot is located in West Virginia?
God bless these people who are out there doing ministry and have a heart to minister and a heart for people and have virtually no support money wise or people wise even. Try running a church that way.....no help, no money. Many, many, Pastor's do this.
It's like a bad "Walton's" episode where all this bad stuff happens to everyone and then some how it all works out and they are happy at the close of the show. The horrible trials they faced as a family always end at night time.....with you looking at the outside of their two story farm house and then you hear the kids and parents all tell each other "Goodnight" and somehow you know that it's gonna be a great life ahead for the Walton's and for yourself too.....for some odd reason.
It's like a Tiny Tim moment when he shouts "God Bless us everyone" and life seems easier, lighter.
It gave you hope didn't it?
I mean if it worked out for the Walton's.....well then it can work out for me too right??? Well yes. That is until the next episode.
That show gave you a "warm, fuzzy feeling."
I know.....because I love the Walton's too....many times I wished I lived there with them on Walton Mountain. I always have thought that was the place to move to. Where is Walton Mountain anyway.....is it in North Carolina? Someone tell me.
I guess I wanted to go there at times because ...nothing ever happened on the "Waltons" that was all that horrible.
It's sort of a wholesome, American fairy tale isn't it??? I love that Christmas movie they did...the "pilot" to the series...fab!!! If you haven't seen that.....find it and watch it. We will talk about that one later on.
Hold with me a moment right here......
We all like those kinds of things....Hallmark commercials..baby bunnies, hot chocolate on a winter's day..warm beds....or whatever thing it may be....some thing or some place where you don't have to face reality at times.
Especially in the hard times.
What do you consider "a hard time" is what I guess is what I want you to ponder.
I'm here to inform you...that it's not always like the Walton's for many of these little churches and the Pastors and their families that minister in them.
There's no big houses, no maids, no pedicures, no fashion magazine wardrobes, maybe only one car and maybe it runs..maybe it doesn't....no fantastic "ministry" trips to Europe or beyond....no local outreaches, because there's no bodies to help and no funds to pay for outreaches, no missions trips, because you can't even support missions because there's hardly enough money to pay the bills, and keep the doors open, let alone no opportunities of getting to go to conferences or teaching things to refresh and encourage the Pastor and or his family. No vacations. Maybe not much of all the things we see as "needed" to get through life.
I've seen this over and over in little churches and I know people that do it anyway regardless of the conditions.
I wonder "how they can take it?" They are such better people than myself.
I guess I am a weenie.
Seven years Pastoring a better church than the ones I am talking about nearly did my family in. There was more than enough heartache, rejection and sorrow than a person could ever want. As if you wanted it in the first place.
Although, we had some good times... we did also see the hard times...the times when your back was so pressed against the wall....when people would "try" to punish you and withhold their tithes and offerings so as to "run you off" and only end up hurting the church and themselves. There were many dark days.. days when I just wanted to run to far away Norway and sleep for a month in a cabin under some really nice, warm "down" comforters....and I couldn't.
I DID however get to take that trip to Florida for a week one year and stay with friends who helped me get counseling for "clinical depression."
That was a blast.
Sorry......just being real here.
Yes......I got depressed. I was worn out physically, mentally and spiritually.
Trust me......it DOES happen, even to people in ministry.
ESPECIALLY to people in ministry.
It wasn't easy. Not at all. Not easy for us back then and not easy for MANY today.
Yet do we believe that God was faithful to us through all those years you wonder????
Oh yeah..... and best thing..... He still is.
I THANK GOD for dedicated hearts in all shapes and sizes, ages, and races.
These people couldn't do what they do if they didn't love and honor and respect and ESPECIALLY trust "FATHER" God enough to take the hard trails in life, ( yes I said "trail" because sometimes all you have is a narrow path to lead you up the mountain) even to their OWN "hurt."
So all that stated..let's go on with the rest of today.
Later in the afternoon I went with my good friend Diane to Sams Club because she needed to get some things. There we bumped into some other good friends of mine, "the Wilkerson Family"...that was a nice, "chance" moment.
Always fun to run into people you know and love out somewhere when you didn't expect to.
After that Diane and I went to "Books a Million" and chatted over some magazines and a weird book we wanted to peak at and read a few things in but not buy.
THEN we proceeded to solve some of the world's greatest problems all while drinking this really, really, GOOOOOD "Pumpkin Spice Chai" tea that is out right now for Fall.
Ummmmm it was soooo yummy.
That's why I'm telling you about it. Don't take my word for it....
Go get you some.
Here's a little tea thought for tonight:
Tea is liquid wisdom. ~Anonymous
Tell you what....that "Pumpkin Spice Chai" gave ME some "liquid wisdom" tonight...
it made me realize this....that I need to buy that stuff in bulk somewhere to have here at my home!!!