Wednesday, January 26, 2011

how i learned to annoy dinosaurs

photo: Property#1
I came by my subversive tendencies honestly, and ironically they began in the church.

The world has enough blogs and books where young men bash the church from an ivory tower of either religious or academic superiority.  I don't ever intend to do that here.

The truth is: despite her faults, I love the Church.  Most of my best friendships revolve around church in one way or another.

Nevertheless, as all married people know, the longer you love someone (or something), the easier it is to see their faults.

The way my mom tells the story, I've been in church nearly every Sunday since the week after I was born, except those few where I was too sick to attend or a couple of weeks in college where I became a member of Bedside Baptist Church (not a real church - I slept in, sorry mom).

My home church growing up was pastored by a church planter who had grown up in rural Missouri.  He used words like "swimming hole", and he told us stories of his early days in ministry where farm folk would sometimes pay his salary in freshly butchered meat.

Yet, he was eloquent - incredibly so.  He started teaching adjunct classes at my Bible College while I was still attending, and I suddenly became self-conscious when talking around him.  I knew that my penchant for swear words and dirty jokes sounded cheap against his memorized quotes of Scripture, Lewis, Lincoln, Tolkien, Bonhoeffer, Wormbrand and countless others.

His was not a mouth trained by noble birth or impressive education.  Rather, it was that of a man who clearly believed that his life was precious and that his words were as numbered as his days.

This man taught me that ordinary men could be extraordinary if they followed Jesus as he did.  He knew this because Jesus chose 12 ordinary men to start with, and they changed the world.

1 comment:

  1. raj- thanks for the book recommendation. it's ironic b/c we are starting that book with our small group in a couple weeks. i'm looking forward to it. hope you guys are doing well!


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