Do you ever have one of those days?
I planned to post a video version of the famous Dunn Holler Report only to find out this morning that I don’t have video capablity for the blog. I need some sort of upgrade. So, this is temporarily delayed.
Then I write a post to go with this and publish, only to see nothing appear when the post is published.
What do you do when you continue to run into problems?
You can pitch a hissie-fit and throw your computer. At one point in my life, I probably would have done this.
Or you can just roll with it.
I rolled with it.
That’s life, isn’t? A series of choices between losing it and keeping cool. We win and we lose at this.
Hopefully I will figure out my issues and you will get to see the video I produced. It may be the greatest thing in the history of man. Until then this is what you have.
Have a great Leap Day!!!
It’s hard for me to believe that I have now written six of these First Church Year posts. We have gone to our new church each Sunday this year, so we have been there for around nine Sundays.
One of the things that stood out to me was marked by a couple of absences. Our worship leader was gone for the day. The gentleman that filled in for him did a great job and even wore a Daffy Duck tie. It wasn’t that the music suffered with him being gone. It was just a fact that a member of our fellowship wasn’t there. I believe that truly makes a difference.
Another friend was absent due to having surgery Friday. Both he and his wife were gone and we have begun developing a good relationship with them. Besides the fact that I personally missed them, I could tell that the body as a whole missed their presence.
A couple of other things really stood out to me from Sunday’s service. There have been some issues and problems within the church prior to when we began attending church there. I can sense the Lord working in the lives of many of the people. I see healing happening. I really believe that this church is on the verge of revival.,
The final thing is that our Sunday School teacher came up to me after the service. He told me how much he appreciated the comments I make in class. He also said that it challenged him to prepare even better each Sunday. It was pretty cool to be told that you are encouraging someone who has been in the church for several years.
How about you? How was your Sunday?
Art is a personal gift that changes the recipient.— Seth Godin from Linchpin
I have been on a kick over the past few weeks reading Seth Godin. I have read Purple Cow. I have read Tribes. Now, as I write this, I am reading Linchpin. I’m not going into a description of these books. However, the quote above stuck out to me as I read it. And it made me wonder. It made me wonder about how this applies to church.
For a lot of us, art in church stops when we get out of kiddie church. We stop coloring, drawing pictures and playing with PlayDough. But if we look at art differently, then it never truly disappeared.
We who are a part of the Church have been changed. If anyone is in Christ, they are a new creation. What changed them? What changed us? Of course, it is Christ who changed us. But how did He do it?
I love to tell the story, ’twill be my theme in glory, to tell the old, old story of Jesus and his love.
Someone told us the story. Yes, there is doctrine in it. Yes, there is theology behind it. Yes, there are facts in it. But at the heart of it, there is a story. An old, old Story. And what is a story? At its best its art. And this is the best Story of all, isn’t it?
This is a story that comes directly from the throne of God and changes the recipient.
So, how does that quote apply to church?
We have received the greatest art possible from God. We have received the Story.
Are we letting that Art, that Story change how we do church?
Are we simply trying to teach some facts in Sunday School or bible study today? Or are we creating art that will change our lives? Are we telling the Story?
Are simply singing songs that will entertain us for a few minutes? Or are we creating art? Are we telling the Story?
How about the sermon? Are we sitting there passively waiting for lunch? Or are we creating art with the pastor? Are we participating in the Story?
How about anything else we do in church? Are we telling the Story?
What difference would this make in our churches if the Story was driving what we did? What if we approached everything we did in church as being great, exceptional and true Art?
What about the other six days of the week? Is the Story driving what we do?
How about you? Are you making church Art? Do you love to tell the Story? In everything you do?
Thanks for stopping by to see what happened in Deuceology Land this week. It was a pretty good week. Traffic seems to have been up, but best of all comments have increased.
Sunday’s post was How To Be A Linchpin In Your Church.
On Monday, First Church Year #5 continued our first year in our new church.
Tuesday was a good day with What Size Is Your Crayon?
Wednesday’s post proved popular with Stop Living The Dream.
Thursday had the post of the week with Southern Great Commission Baptists???
Friday ended the week with Skip Like A Calf.
I added a Speaking Schedule page. Nothing is there yet, but as I begin my campground speaking in May, those dates will appear. Also, any other opportunities will appear there as well.
Thanks for your support of Deuceology. You are what makes this thing enjoyable. I love your visits and your comments.
When I was in the sixth grade I bought six Holstein calves. Every morning I would wake up and bottle feed them. I would repeat this again every evening.
When I would go to feed them, the calves would become excited and almost jump around when I brought the bottles. They would literally skip on their way to be fed.
This is how we as believers in Christ are described in Malachi. We, who fear the Lord, are said to skip like calves. We are described as having the same joy as a calf leaving the stall.
So, I wonder.
How many of us truly live life with this kind of joy? We have every reason to. We belong to the Creator of the universe. We have been covered by the blood of His son. We are redeemed. Saved. Blessed.
Is that your experience with the folks in your church? Is that your experience with the followers of Christ that you know?
I know many with that kind of joy. Others, though, act as though God is out to get them. Their lives reflect a belief that God means for their life to be miserable.
That isn’t how God wants our lives to be. He wants us to live joyful lives. He wants us to live lives like skipping calves, joyful and happy to be in Him.
How about you? Do you live a joyful life? Will you skip like a calf today?
The Southern Baptist Convention decided this week to sort of, kind of, not really change its name this week. The legal name will remain the same, but a modifier has been added. In addition to, or in substitution of, SBC churches may call themselves, Great Commission Baptists.
I know that my regular followers have been wondering where the Deuceology blog post about this has been. They know that I have been a lifelong Southern Baptist and are wondering what I think about it. So, here goes.
I don’t care.
I hope that wasn’t too anti-climatic. I simply don’t care what the name of the denomination of my local church.
I understand all the sides of the issue.
Are you really a Southern Baptist if your church is in Massachusetts or Kenya?
The name is offensive to some due to the origination being tied to the South and slavery.
Some are proud, like the leadership of the Tennessee Baptist Convention, of the Southern Baptist name. They do not see the need of any sort of change.
Again, I don’t really care. I’m not terribly proud or ashamed of my Southern Baptist heritage. I’ve never felt the need to apologize to anyone for what my ancestors did. All of that is history. I don’t ignore it , but neither do I fly a banner or allow it to trip me up.
My concern is whether people know Christ.
If I call myself a Great Commission Baptist in New England, and people know Christ, then that’s what I want.
If I call myself a Southern Baptist in the Bible Belt , and people know Christ, then it’s a win.
I won’t boast in either one.
All I want to do is boast in Christ.
Are you a Southern Baptist? Do you care about the name? Are you okay with this non-change change? Did you even know about it?
Maybe you have heard it this week. Maybe you have said it.
Someone asks how you’re doing. How do you respond? “Living the dream!!!” is often the answer.
That’s awesome, isn’t it. So many people who you run into answer back that their life is the dream they have always wanted.
Are that many people really living the dream? I don’t think so.
It’s become a cliché’, like so many other sayings. People say living the dream just give the facade that their lives are exactly like they have always wanted. They want to give the perception that their lives are awesome and couldn’t be better.
How many people are really there?
I don’t think that many.
Very few people are living the dream. If so, there wouldn’t be so much divorce. If so, there wouldn’t be so much of pursuit of happiness in things that don’t really matter.
Stop living a cliché’.
Stop living the dream.
Where is your dream really coming from?
In the days when Samuel was young and serving the Lord, word from the Lord and visions were rare and infrequent.
I think it is that way today. Why? Because most people aren’t pursuing God through Christ.
They don’t know Him.
They don’t believe in Him.
They don’t trust Him.
They aren’t turning to the Source.
They may say they are living the dream, but they don’t even know the Dream-Giver.
They want to live the dream, but He wants to give them the Dream.
My prayer is that they their eyes will open and they will see the One who can truly give them the Dream.
Then they really can live the Dream.
Let’s make sure that we are.
Are you living the Dream?
When I was in first grade, I had those big fat crayons. You might remember them. There were about eight of them that came in a pack. They were for kids with small hands. I never really understood the logic of putting big crayons in little kids hands, while the big kids got the small crayons.
I remember, as clear as a bell, a girl in second grade having a box of 64 Crayola crayons. I gazed upon her multitude of colors and then looked back at my eight.
Her pictures were so much better. Why? I know it was because she had more and smaller crayons.
I couldn’t color in the lines. Even when my crayons became smaller I couldn’t do it.
I was told and cajoled to color in the lines. And I was never really able to. Even now, my coloring would not look as neat and beautiful as someone else’s.
Now, as an adult, I face the same challenges. You mean you want me to drive 50, not 51? You mean I can’t walk on that grass? I really want to touch that paint.
I don’t like lines.
I don’t think I’m unique.
The church wants me to color in the lines too. In many ways I will. Then, somewhere along the way, I get outside the lines in a big way.
Steven Taylor wrote a couple of decades ago about a guy who has to color inside the lines called “I Want To Be A Clone”. He satirized the fact that the church wants everyone to conform and be like everyone else. Many really don’t know what to do with those who want to color outside the lines.
There are people in your church today that color outside the lines. Maybe an entire church colors outside the lines of the other churches in the area.
Do you know what you should do?
Applaud. Clap. Support. Encourage.
Because they are part of the Body. Because they are a leg to your arm. They are a left hand to your right.
Because they may have little fingers with a big crayon. Or bigger fingers with a small one.
Because they are drawing and coloring a picture that God finds beautiful.
And so should we.
What size is your crayon?
What can I say about this week’s church experience that I haven’t already said?
Solid preaching from our interim pastor.
Worshipful music that leads to a corporate experience with God.
However, that isn’t what I want to focus on today.
I want to zero in on what happened after the worship service yesterday.
We had a potato/chili luncheon to raise money to send the youth to a conference.
It was fantastic to see the response of so many people bringing chili and potatoes to support the youth.
But even that isn’t what I really want to talk about.
Jan and I spent time with a couple who shared how much they led and loved the youth when they were younger. Now, some of those youth are now having children and they are loving those children. They also shared with how God has blessed them at different times in their lives.
We also got to spend time with another couple. One of them is having surgery on Friday, so we have an opportunity to pray this week for them. On a side note, they also own cattle. Growing up, my family had cattle as well. It’s great to get to know people who you have things in common with.
The bottom line is that we are truly beginning to feel connected in this church. We love it and it is becoming home.
How are things going in your church?