Friday, July 28, 2006

New Wineskins - Final Thoughts (for now)

I am so thankful that Jay Leno and David Letterman do not have the PCUSA on their radar. They could have a field day with all of the one-liners that have emerged from the church in the past month. “Nothing has changed.” “Everything has changed.” “We are in a constitutional crisis.” “Mother, Child, Womb.” “Stay, fight, win.” “We are convinced that the church cannot restructure its way to health.” “Constitutional Musing.” All of this would be amusing if it weren’t so sad. Every minute spent on these types of constitutional/institutional infightings is another minute that we don’t spend fulfilling the Great Commission and Great Commandment.

So where do I/we go from here?

First, keep the first thing FIRST! Jesus’ parting instructions to his followers commanded us to be in the business of making disciples (preaching, teaching, baptizing, etc.). Let’s be about Kingdom business first and foremost.

Second, we need to be people of prayer. We need to “do” less and “pray” more. Prayer needs to be our first action rather than an after thought.

Third, become people of the Word. There are too many biblically illiterate Presbyterians in our midst. My eyes were opened to this fact while taking the Bible Content Ordination Exam many years ago. The test had been going for about fifteen minutes when one young man got up and started to leave. His friends sitting near him asked him if he was giving up. He smiled and answered, “It pays being raised as a Fundy.” We need to take Psalm 119 seriously and hide God’s Word in our hearts.

Fourth, regain some perspective. There was no “Presbyterian” church for most of the history of Christianity. It will not be the end of the world if the PCUSA ceases to exist (which is not going to happen) or if churches leave the denomination.

Fifth, keep informed as to the developments in the PCUSA. The issues facing our denomination are serious. I have been amazed at how many pastors do not keep current on the happenings in the PCUSA. There are times when I have received information that was not exactly right. We need to keep involved in the exchange of information from all sides of the spectrum.

I will continue trying to meet my goal of blogging five days each week. I will monitor the denominational “stuff” and post as appropriate. I will try to make it to the meetings in Atlanta and relay the “happenings” to those who are willing to read/listen. Check back next week for some fresh and exciting stuff.

PS – Our “old house” is on the market. Pray that it sells!


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