Rashional Thoughts

Rashional Thoughts: Could we face the chaos around us better with a calmer church life?

Can you pull your memory back to the surface? That time you truly sensed the Lord moving and understood a depth of worship you had never felt before.

What if you sit quietly and close your eyes? Do you remember? Where were you? What was happening?

Even though the situation surrounding the moment may have been difficult, did the tears flow freely while your heart melted into pure adoration and praise?

Mark Bethea, pastor of First Baptist Church Montgomery, shares how one of his top worship experiences was about six weeks ago in a parking garage (see story here).

“The Lord was doing something in our midst,” he said. And members of the congregation are asking to re-create what they experienced outside during that difficult Sunday morning following an arson attack on their church.

Intentional seasons of rest

With all the challenges coming at us nonstop these days, what if all our churches decided to implement intentional seasons of reduced activity and simple worship services?

Would we yearn to worship together because of the refreshment rather than the activity?

I realize we were all ready to be together again as the worst of the pandemic subsided.

And according to Lifeway Research (see story here), 98% of churches are meeting in person again.

But is it possible we swung our pendulums a bit too far in the eagerness to regain our previous routines? Did we jump back in and try to make up for lost time by filling up our church calendars with anything and everything we could?

Reflecting back to 2020, did you find yourself at a loss related to ministry when events could not be held? Was it hard to minister and help others grow in their spiritual walks without an activity to plan?

Minimalist approach

Is it possible we are addicted to full calendars and prefer to spend our energy planning an activity and recruiting people to participate?

What if we took a minimalist approach to the church event calendar?

What if we communicated with other church families in our community and spread out the various events rather than several churches holding similar events during the same seasons?

We really aren’t in danger of running out of people to fill our churches, so why not work together to reach the community and let individuals and families land where they feel most comfortable? The important point is to reach them for Christ and help them find a church family who will help them grow in their faith.

Think about the pressure that would come off our church staff members if they could spend more time discipling lay leaders who could in turn disciple others in the congregation.

Think about how many worship services we could have where we fill our spiritual tanks more often because we all — staff and members — are coming calmly and simply before the Lord.

Looking forward to seeing you next week in Huntsville for the annual meeting of the state convention

Our team at The Alabama Baptist is so excited to catch up with all of you who will be in Huntsville next week for the Alabama Baptist State Convention annual meeting.

It may be hard to focus on our coverage assignments because we will want to visit with all of you.

Stop by our booth in the exhibit halls at both the annual meeting and the Pastors Conference the day before in Decatur.

You’ll see us down front in the sanctuary at the press table as well. Come by to say hello if you have an opportunity.

Daily recaps planned

And for those not able to attend, be sure to follow us on Facebook and Twitter to keep up with highlights throughout the three days.

We also will post daily recaps on tabonline.org and will publish complete coverage in the Nov. 25 issue of the print edition.

Thanks to Pastor Darryl Craft and Whitesburg Baptist Church for hosting all of us for the annual meeting, and Pastor Blake Kersey and First Baptist Church Decatur for organizing and hosting the Pastors Conference.

We know the amount of work and preparation that goes into hosting these events and really appreciate all you’ve invested to provide a good experience for the Alabama Baptist family.

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