"So," they say, "nobody's perfect!"
But the Vinedresser won't buy that.
Given the opportunity, He will trim the unproductive suckers and shape the branches so each one will bask in Sonlight.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

The Scriptural Basis For Fuss-Budgets

Based on the number of Nervous Nellies, Worry-Warts and Fuss-Budgets filling the average church's pews, we may assume that scripture give lots of foundation for fastidious fidgeting. There's a passage that says, "The Lord cares about what is important, but doesn't give a fig about life's daily cares." (Proverbs 18:26 DSP[Devised Substandard Paraphrase])
        Well, maybe that isn't the right scripture reference, but come on, it's got to be there somewhere. Fact is, churches have refined worrying to high-art, with Murphy's Law as their highest standard of behavior. Need proof? Try running the morning service's dismissal five minutes late. That's right, you would need a sharp knife to cut the atmospheric tension.
        Someone, if you dare, please stand at the end of a worship service and read the following passage from the Holy Bible: No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon. Therefore I say unto you, Take no thought for your life, what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink; nor yet for your body, what ye shall put on. Is not the life more than meat, and the body than raiment? Behold the fowls of the air: for they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are ye not much better than they? Which of you by taking thought can add one cubit unto his stature? (Mat 6:24-27 KJVA) Be ready, though, to finish reading over the sound of appreciative snorting and throat-clearing. And the thought occupying the space behind all those stressed expressions staring at you would be something like, "Why on earth is Pastor so long-winded today? The line at the Smorgasbord will be around the block by the time we get there." Those thoughts harmonize rather well with Matthew 6:25, do they not? Though, this passage from Matthew's gospel has seen more Sunday-morning light than most, it has been heeded less than any other.
        Maybe this vital portion of God's word would garner better reviews if the church leadership believed it more deeply than the pew-sitters. True, the under-shepherd must use his time wisely, with all those wandering sheep that need tending. The lessons of scripture, however, must be taught more by example than by sermonizing. A pastor is likely to have the most nobel of motives for being in a hurry(unless he's also worried about the Smorgasbord line), but Jesus never once hurried during his ministry, except to arrive on time for his crucifixion. Are our worldly concerns nailed to the cross of Christ?

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