Sunday, March 01, 2009
So my Dad (that's him, to the left, there) was licensed for ministry in the Baptist Church this morning. Apparently now he can do pretty much everything a local pastor can do, except be called "Reverend." And that's okay, because while Reverend Raymond is alliterative, it doesn't exactly trip off the tongue without making you feel like you may have had one too many.
So that is awesome, and we gladly shared in his joy at the service this morning. My Mom has been having some medical issues and both Mom and Dad are still dealing with the pain of injuries suffered in a serious automobile collision nearly three years ago. I'm delighted that Dad now has this "new chapter" in his life to add some weight to the positive side of life's equation while we draw breath.
While we were at the church - Judson Memorial Baptist Church in Lansing, Michigan (and the church I cut my religious teeth on) - we heard the sermon by Pastor Zachary Bartels and I gotta tell ya, I think I'd pay money to hear this guy preach. He understands Scripture, and perhaps more importantly, he understands how to relate it to what you and I are dealing with today. He speaks with passion, humor, and insight. You can download MP3's of his stuff here. (He also hosts a whole plethora of other websites devoted to Calvinist theology, classic literature, humor, and keen intellectual insights.)
One of the things he said this morning I had never heard before. Maybe you had, but it was an interesting way of putting it. He said that gossip and flattery are two sides of the same coin. Gossip is saying something behind someone's back that you'd never say to their face. Flattery is saying something to their face that you'd never say behind their back. And both are sinful. (Check it out: the Bible has not much kind to say about flattery.)
After church, we had lunch with the folks then stopped in at my son's new apartment briefly to drop off a little more of his stuff. So yeah, it was a good day.
Even with our van coming down with a flat tire this morning. Ugh.
Balance in all things, I guess....