.comment-link {margin-left:.6em;}

Sunday, September 17, 2006

Word For The Week

In the presence of God and of Christ Jesus, who will judge the living and the dead, and in view of his appearing and his kingdom, I give you this charge: Preach the Word; be prepared in season and out of season; correct, rebuke and encourage—with great patience and careful instruction. For the time will come when men will not put up with sound doctrine. Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear. They will turn their ears away from the truth and turn aside to myths. But you, keep your head in all situations, endure hardship, do the work of an evangelist, discharge all the duties of your ministry.

2 Timothy 4:1-5
Sometimes you just want to say, "Fughetaboudit!" Ever feel like Sisyphus, toiling away at a task that will never actually accomplish anything? Ever feel like you were absolutely wasting your time? Ever want to holler and throw up both your hands? Nothing wll get you to that point quicker than for people to receive your best efforts with a collective, "Yeah, whatever."

I know many ministers who faithfully fulfill their mandate to preach the Word every Sunday, many of whose followers greet their words with, "Yeah, whatever." I know how frustrating it is to work and prepare all week just to be greeted by the faithful with an unambiguous ambivalence. It is just as frustrating for those of us who write to those who at-best merely tolerate our presence. Tolerate, as in, "Well, I'll put up with this for the sake of being polite, but I really wouldn't complain if I never had to endure this crap again." How much more frustrating is it for those of us who write on behalf of those who would much rather read about puppies or petunias or even poltergeists or The Pirates of Penzance than to put up with some preacher pontificating about some poignant points pertaining to the priority of Christ.

Tolerance.

I know the frustration of many a blogger who has poured themselves into blog post after blog post after blog post just to look at their comments and find nothing but chirping crickets. I know people who have writen exceedingly insightful opinions and yet nobody respond or acknoledged their insights. I know people who have poured their souls into post after post after post without anyone feeling or even acknowledging their pain. I know people who have stood firm for that which is right without so much as an at-a-boy or a pat on the back or any other affirmation. I know the frustration, so what should we do when nobody seems to be listening? What should we do when nobody seems to care if we even exist, let alone what we're actually saying? What should we do when everyone within earshot of us seems to collectively say to us, "Yeah, whatever!"

Preach the Word.

I liken it to conversing with a Republican about the futility of Bush's Misadventure In Mesapotamia. No matter how rational the argument, no matter how emotionally compelling the presentation, they - like a tree planted by the river - they shall not be moved. No matter how many pie charts you show them or how many bar graphs you present to them, no matter what kind of statistical analysis you come up with or what historical argument you present, they simply don't like Democrats and they won't trust liberals and they will support their Commander In Chief no matter what you say or do.

Some folk are just stuck on stupid.

Be that as it may, we who are called by the name of Christ are called to preach the Word, in season and out of season. When folk applaud us we are to preach the Word. When folk would rather we shut up about all this God stuff we are to preach the Word. When folk need a word of encouragement we are to preach the Word. When folk need to be told about themselves we are to preach the Word. When folk need to be informed we are to Preach the Word. When folk aren't trying to hear a thing we have to say we are to preach the Word. In all things - in season and out of season - we are to preach the Word. Not just "preachers" who stand before the congregation every Sunday, but everyone who is called by the name of Christ - every Christian - we are to preach the Word, for in our every word, thought and deed we are indeed preaching, testifying about Jesus Christ. What are we testifying? What are we preaching? That Jesus is a right-wing Republican who cares nothing about the economic sin, about preying upon the poor and downtrodden? That Jesus votes Democratic and cares nothing about social sin, misplaced sexuality and cracked-out covetousness masquerading as marketing campaigns? Are we preaching that Jesus is essentially nonexistent by our lives that do not reflect His nature and our words that never mention Him? What do we preach in our lives and in our conversation?

We need to preach the Word!

We need to preach the Word because the time will come - and is clearly already here - when people will not put up with sound doctrine. Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear. They will turn their ears away from the truth and turn aside to myths, making stuff up to make themselves comfortable. It is for such a time as this that Christians are called to preach the Word.
Remember the word that I said to you, 'A slave is not greater than his master.' If they persecuted Me, they will also persecute you; if they kept My word, they will keep yours also.
I know: "Yeah, whatever."

It's preaching season.

May the LORD bless you and keep you;
May the LORD make His face shine upon you and be gracious to you;
And may the LORD,
Who wants you to hide His Word in your heart,
May He turn His face toward you and give you peace.

Emancipated by Athanasius @ 11:00 AM

Links to this post:

Create a Link

Obama-Biden Transition

Commentary & Reference

Local Media Outlets

Syndicate this site

Subscribe in NewsGator Online