dOn’T yOu hAvE aNy tEeTh yEt?

If you’re like me, when you go to the store to pick out produce, it’s a big deal to find the pottle with perfect strawberries or tomatoes. I’ll shake the carton like crazy to uncover anything mushy or bruised. You know by now that I have an insane way of bringing spiritual truths to everyday life, just another quirky way that my chaotic brain operates. Dangerously Transparent has been a successful blog and I have no doubt why.  I took a RISK to be less than perfect with my readers. THANKS for letting me to be me.

What I’ve learned in fifty years of ministry is that babies are in every church family. I don’t care how friendly, wealthy, great a location, awesome the music, inspiring the pastor’s messages are, magnificent the kids’ program, in tune with the youth, mission minded, community oriented. It won’t matter; count on a handful of colicky infants. If we’re involved in a church, we must be willing to tolerate gasp and snarl..even be expected to babysit the church babies.

I’m not talking about wicked or evil hypocrites; when it comes to that type, I pray for GOD to KICK them out of the playpen..bwahaha..gotta keep it real!  I’m referring to those poor souls who have gotta have it their way, she stuck her tongue out at me, he squeezed my hand too hard for a friendly handshake, preacher’s not visiting shut ins enough, deacons are too secretive, music’s too loud, why don’t we have Communion every month, don’t like the new bulletin, who stole our class’s podium, tables are for Homecoming dinner-not kids’ church, son didn’t get a camp tee shirt, grandma’s pillow was moved from third pew (I’m glad we had visitors but Granny can only sit in THAT pew because we bought it in her honor, it’s sort of OUR pew) church has gone to pot since we stopped Sunday night worship to do that small group stuff (we stopped coming on Sunday nights years ago because that’s our family time, but as for the other 67% of the congregation who stopped showing up..I’m sure they had lame excuses)  On and on & on it goes.

Whatever we do-someone’s going to find fault-it’s an epidemic in most churches. I read that we learn much easier once we know all there is to know. I’ve learned sometimes it is best to KEEP CALM & MOVE ALONG when it comes to the pesky babies.  Reminds me of one of  daddy’s favorite sayings when I was coming up a preacher’s kid-a bulldog can whip a skunk, but is it really worth it? Modern day translation. Choose battles wisely.  The good news..GOD’S work will be done one way or another-the bad news..I can’t control how anyone strives for the goal but myself.  GOD has the power to change a situation at anytime so who am I to question why HE allows this one or that one to throw a wrench into our efforts?  The truth is, I get bent out of shape often about them-which usually takes my focus off of CHRIST’S agenda for my life and that of the church where I am serving.

Paul is spot on about the spiritually immature. They keep the rest of us in a tizzy-we run around with diaper bags full of bottles & wipes to keep them pacified; a waste of valuable time indeed but I’m understanding that I complicate the matter by complaining out  loud. Changing diapers isn’t pleasant but somebody’s gotta do it. Furthermore, I pity adults who require constant attention from those half their size or age. From country churches to mega temples, we coddle more babies in our sanctuaries than we do the nurseries.  We should designate an area for ADULT DAYCARE & call it something less in your face like SPOON ROOM..cheeky.  Bottom line-it’s frustrating for the majority whose goal is to recruit warriors to disciple into soldiers-to play referee between our own troops. You want to scream out-why are you taking pious punches at hit him? Why are you throwing gossip grenades at her?  STOP fighting with each other so we can fight the REAL enemy!

I’ve been praying these words for most of my life-LORD, use me-I am willing to do whatever. But, now that I know all there is to know, I’ve learned-there are areas that I FLAT out DESPISE to be assigned to-namely ADULT DAYCARE.  I’ve lost my temper with many babies over the years & I regret it. I wish I’d had more sympathy and frankly I wish I’d shown more patience with the childlike mentality. Maybe if I’d been willing to change their “formula” instead pushing my desire to get them off the bottle, I would’ve seen more babies promoted to the preschool department.

LORD, USE me..I am willing to do whatever. And, if I’m not..well, maybe I needed to be shown that I’m not as grown up as I believed.

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