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A Matter of Perspective

It’s Friday night in a town where Football is huge and an area where there is no shortage of “things to do on a Friday night”.  So what do about 300 area people do on this Friday night?  Sit an listen to four hour sermon at church.

That was my night tonight.  The picture at the forefront of this post was taken as I began the 1st worship session of the night.  You’ll notice the absence of the rest of the band.  There was no special lighting…just a whole group of believers and a guitar….ready to listen to four hours worth of a pastor diving into God’s Word.

I know, I know…there are pastors right now wondering “I have a hard enough time getting people in my church to sit still for a one hour sermon…much less four.  What gives?”  It’s a matter of perspective.

I realized something tonight.  Look again at the picture above.  At first glance – this is really downscaled compared to a typical Sunday.  In actuality, there is nothing downscale about it.  There is still focus lighting.  There is still a huge sound system being tweaked by a $200,000 Yamaha PM1D soundboard that was making my Taylor sound as great as it was.  There are still cushions in the chairs.  On second thought…there are still chairs.  As a matter of fact – there is still a public venue where we could all come together and enjoy these amenities.  It was almost an after-thought.

There are places where these “almost after-thoughts” are “un-thought-ofs”.  Watch.

You see, these people have so much more to worry about than what type building they come to.  They have to worry about whether or not they could be arrested, beaten, or even killed because they simply believe.  Yet, in these areas, people still manage to come together in the dead of night in secret and meet and study God’s Word…for hours and hours.  They can’t get enough of it.  It keeps them going.  It sustains them.  They wouldn’t blink at four hours…nor would they think that it was “too long for a sermon.”

And that is exactly why so many people gave up their night tonight to come in to our “Secret Church” and learn and grow and pray for four hours.  It is a matter of perspective.

Do I criticize the amenities that many churches have today?  No.  The perspective I hope you gain from my scattered thoughts this evening is simply this.  We have, to some extent, cheapened the value of the experience we have engaging God when we take it for granted that it is “just something we do on Sundays.”  My prayer tonight is that I would have the yearning and the longing to run after God just like those that are persecuted on a daily basis do.  I pray the same for each of you.

With love – serving with you,