Archive for December, 2011

Why Worship on Christmas Day?

December 13, 2011

YES, WE ARE HAVING WORSHIP ON CHRISTMAS DAY! I know that many of the megachurches nationwide have canceled services and encouraged their members to stay home with family. So, why should we attend worship on Christmas Day?

First, it is the Sabbath, the day we usually worship our God. The angels, shepherds, the wise men, Mary and Joseph all had one thing in common. They came to worship and adore the newborn king, Jesus, the son of God! He is the reason for the season. I want to be doing
what they did on this awesome Christmas morning.

Second, I want the world to see that the worship and praise of Jesus is the center of my Christmas. I love my family and being with them around the tree. Yet I love Jesus more! And I want to worship with them and lead them to kneel at the feet of Jesus on his birthday. And I want to witness to my neighbors by my presence that he is my Lord and King.

Third, I know that the services at my church and churches everywhere will be extra special because of the day. Choirs, pastors and servants have been practicing, preparing and praying diligently about this special day and I want to honor their effort and commitment.  I encourage parents to be casual that day. Let the children come in their play clothes or PJ’s. Let them bring one gift they received for show and tell with friends and family.

Even if you are out-of-town,  go and worship Jesus that day with other believers and seekers. Be a wise man, a humble shepherd or like Mary and just absorb God’s grace and wonder that day. May the blessings and joy of our Lord and Savior fill your days, especially on HIS BIRTHDAY! Glory to God in the highest, and in our homes and this world,  join me in praying for peace and goodwill for all people.

Change is Normal!

December 6, 2011

The human body is constantly in change. Our weight fluctuates, brain cells emerge and die and our hair never lies on our head the same way! Organizations change and evolve. Tastes change. I can remember when I did not like squash – now I love it – boiled, fried and even casseroled! Without change, the body, relationships and organizations alike will slowly become bland and die.

It is old news that people resist change and this is true for all ages. We do not like folks to change the times of meetings, shift the furniture or alter the color of paint in our hallways. We opt for continuity yet evidence shows we thrive on change. The world only knew rule by monarchy until the American Revolution – then change led to democracy and freedoms we now cherish. My wife and I recently changed communities and homes. The changes were stressful and emotional – yet we love the change and are thriving in them. A friend’s church recently changed their long practiced Christmas Drama – the change led to new energy, more volunteers and large crowds. They are celebrating this key change.

We have made many changes at the church that I lead. Probably more change than most churches make in their first year, what we call the “honeymoon” period between pastor and people. A leader told me Sunday our people are now anticipating and look forward to the changes because we can see the value and the results in changed lives, better communications and more positive outlooks. I am convinced that we would all be better off in our health, our churches, our relationships, our nation and our community when we look forward to change and see it as normal, good and a part of life.

I’m just thankful I have not had to change a diaper in about 19 years. God is good!