It wasn’t exactly my favorite way to meet a prospective Christian, but any way is a good way.
My Dad had run his forefinger through his power saw last Tuesday and so I was in the ER with him late that night when, after the shots and bandaging, the x-ray technician came in with equipment. Conversing with Dad, he found out that Dad has enjoyed working with wood through the years and so he began telling us about his larger-than-life VBS props that he has built for the church he attends…stuff like a giant mushroom that cars drove through to enter their church property the year they had a Mario and Mushrooms theme or the giant director’s clap board he built for the Hollywood themed event.
So I asked this technician what church he attends and he told me about his pentecostal church called “The Flow”. He told me lots of things he likes about it, but then he also told me that he and his family are looking for a new place to worship. He told me about some things that had disappointed him and then he went on to explain the “straw that had broken the camel’s back”:
“My pastor and I were having a discussion the other day. I love him and he’s been so good in many ways. But, when we were talking, I told him some things that were bothering me (He elaborated on these. cc) Then I told my pastor that I didn’t feel like I was being fed …you know the Word. And then do you know what my pastor said? He said “You have to be careful about all that theological mumbo jumbo. It can really get in the way of your relationships.”
Of course I walked through this very open door and said, “You know, he’d better recognize that the very most important relationship we have is the One with God and that His Word is where we find out how to have that relationship. He’d better be very careful how he refers to the Word of God.”
This man is leaving “The Flow” as well he should. The insinuation, of course, that the Word contains theological mumbo-jumbo that can inhibit relationships is blasphemous. Jesus said this about relationships—THE most important relationships:
“Whoever has my commandments and keeps them, he it is who loves me. And he who loves me will be loved by my Father, and I will love him and manifest myself to him” (John 14:21).
This passage emphasizes that the Word is the very tool used by the Lord to enable our relationships with both the Father and the Son. Again only a couple of verses down:
“Jesus answered him, If anyone loves me, he will keep my word, and my Father will love him, and we will come to him and make our home with him” (vs. 23).
I believe I will take what he termed “theological mumbo jumbo” if it is going to cause my Father to love me and come to me and, along with the Son, make His home with me. I would call that a relationship. I’d say that’s the best relationship.
I am going back to that ER with a book that I believe this man will study. He’s already reading his Bible four hours a day on the weekends and he’s already looking for a new “church home.”
Dad was asking me, after we got home about “that man who got into a religious discussion” and how that “came about.” I told him it was because he cut his finger on the table saw and that lead to the VBS woodworking which lead to the church. I said, kind of tongue-in-cheek, “See, if he becomes a Christian it will be all because you ran your finger through the saw.”
Dad said, “Maybe I better go run the other hand through there, too, then.”
We hope you will join us tomorrow night as we discuss God, The Son – His Life and the Gospel Unfolded in Him. The Digging Deep in God’s Word Podcast will begin at 7 p.m. CST Tuesday, February 25th.