Random thoughts on the doorstep
As we stand at the door of 2012, I would like to offer some random thoughts that may encourage you, make you smile, or even give you a nudge in a healthy direction.
Someone sent me this from a church in another state: “We do not allow children between the ages of three months and fifth grade in the adult worship service.” Note: It is not a preference there, it is the law! The message went on to explain that adults will “worship better” without distractions. Two questions: When did training our children to worship with us become a distraction? I thought it was a privilege and a responsibility. Secondly, when did “personal comfort” become our highest goal at church?
Since we are on the subject of our children, let me encourage you Dads to hug your children every day. Tell your sons, especially, that you are proud of them. Their souls will bear that imprint throughout their lives.
Read a good book aloud to your children. And for heaven’s sake, be animated about it! Use different voices for the characters and enjoy the experience. You will be amazed at the blessings this brings to your family.
If you are having trouble with boomerangers (adult children moving back in with you), you might laugh when you hear Paul Shanklin’s song, “Can’t Fit the Cradle.” It is set to the tune of the classic Harry Chapin song, but the chorus goes, “Well, he can’t fit the cradle and he sleeps ‘til noon. The boy’s 42 and he don’t have a clue. When you gonna leave son?” ‘I don’t know when. We’ll have a good time til then, Dad, we’ll have a good time til then.’” At the end of the song, the boy finally gets married again and moves out. The Dad sings, “And as they drove away, it occurred to me, the boy had a front door key, yeah, he still had a front door key!”
Get involved in a good church. What defines a “good church?” Read Paul’s letters and see for yourself. I would say at minimum a good church believes the Bible is the word of God and the leadership lives what they profess. But there is much more than that. You don’t know what you are missing if you have never been committed to a life-changing fellowship of believers. Find a good one and get involved there. For those of you who go to church, this story will make you smile. Three small children announced one evening that they were going to “play church.” Their parents were pleased and proud at the same time, but had to eat humble pie when the children started running around in a panic, pretending to get dressed and yelling, “Hurry up!” “It’s time for church!” “We have five minutes!” “We’ll be late!”
Get involved in missions. You can give money to an organization like the New Directions, or have them come to your church for a “Pack-a-thon.” Call Scott Hahn at 336-227-1273 for details of how you can help feed children in the Third World for a whole year. You can go on a short-term missions trip. You can pray for the persecuted church around the world (go to persecution.com for information). The needs and opportunities are endless.
Exercise. Paul said, “Do you not know that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit?” Don’t listen to the “no-exercise” pundit who said “If swimming is good for your figure, explain whales to me.”
Practice gratefulness. No explanation necessary.
Have a happy and blessed new year!