Church Practices

Question: How do pastors pick a sermon text and prepare the sermon?

Question: How do pastors pick a sermon text and prepare the sermon?

Paul told the elders in Ephesus, “I have not hesitated to proclaim to you the whole will of God.” (Acts 20:27)...the Christian Church has long ago compiled a list of weekly readings that can be used for worship services and that ensure that all the truths of the Bible are touched upon throughout the year.  As a general rule, though free to make adjustments at times, our pastors follow those selections when choosing the Scripture readings and the sermon texts week by week.  That’s why you may have heard a relative or friend, even from a congregation of another denomination, say to you, “We had a sermon on that same text as you did last week.” 

Question: Why can't I take communion with my loved ones who are Christians from another denomination?

Question: Why can't I take communion with my loved ones who are Christians from another denomination?

I remember a little tag on a stroller that my wife and I owned that had these instructions on the stroller – “WARNING – do not fold up this stroller while baby is in it!”  We thought the tag was a joke.  I mean how ridiculous is this warning?  Of course, living in a society that is sue-happy, it’s understandable that lawyers from these companies are doing everything they can to prevent companies from being sued for delinquent behavior. Sometimes, I think the church gets a similar reputation by putting out all these “Do’s” and “Don’ts” out there, but very few “whys” and so people tend to look at the church as just another warning label that very few people pay attention to.

Question: What do I tell my friends who ask, "How can you be a member of a church that doesn't allow women to vote?"

Question: What do I tell my friends who ask, "How can you be a member of a church that doesn't allow women to vote?"

Jesus, our Savior, allows no room for pride and a superiority complex to be a part of the Christian faith because whenever it creeped its way in to the disciple’s life, he had a way of humbling them quickly to sort of reverse the way they think about things in life.  Remember he flip-flops the rules of life by saying, the greatest becomes the least and the least becomes the greatest – which is foreign to our natural way of thinking. 

Question: What exactly does the term "divine call" mean?

Question: What exactly does the term "divine call" mean?

As I’m formulating an answer to this question, our daughter from the Fox Cities forwarded a television news link.  The reporter describes an ongoing investigation of an apparent drive-by shooting that happened last night directly across the street from the parsonage where she and our son-in-law live.  The house was sprayed with bullets and a man inside was wounded in the head.  I didn’t think this was that tough of a neighborhood, but evidently more so than I expected.  And, as always – and especially when dangerous things are happening – the angels of God are present to protect God’s believing people.  But, the question still pops into a parent’s mind: “Are they living in the right spot?!”  The answer is “yes”.  Our son-in-law is called by God through the people of the church to this place.  This is where he is supposed to be.  This is where God wants him to serve – bullets and all – with his blessing.   It’s a divine calling.  And, that’s reassuring to know!