Tuesday, October 21, 2014


Every other Tuesday the church school does a short one-hour chapel service with the students, first through twelfth grade, the first four levels only for an initial fifteen minutes or so, then communal worship with everybody before dismissing the “little diddles” and sermonizing the older ones via a different speaker for each occasion. The principal (our pastor’s wife) has added my name to the schedule (at my request) and I’ve attended the last few assemblies, youth ministry in any area having always been a part of my heart. This morning, listening to her illustrate the Gospel to little children whose perception thus far is still in the “Father Abraham, Jesus loves me” stage stirred my gratitude for all that God has accomplished in her these last four decades. She is great with these kids. Between that teaching and the latter preaching, though, her daughter, with but a guitar and some of the older ones helping her, brought forth a couple of songs with the witness of an inner connection made manifest in all that she is and does. I told my wife afterwards that looking into this young woman’s eyes is like seeing her soul stripped of all pretense, no self-declaration of holiness, no expression of being anything other than what He has forgiven, accepted, and presently working with in the “nakedness” of who and what she is. Ministry is not an ego trip. She has nothing of which to boast, nor from which to hide. Out of her well flows joy, peace, and freedom, the latter seemingly not a matter of having gained release from some physical bondage, but faulty spiritual “thinking”. All I really know, however, is seeing such shine in her countenance makes this old man smile. Dismiss all the legalism of old-time holiness and this is what I walked into 42 years ago, assurance not in one’s head, but in one’s “belly”……

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