A Brief Sermon…

A church that we have helped with missions and they have helped us as well is going through some tough times. Their pastor retired then people couldn’t agree on the qualifications for the next shepherd and they have since decided to divide over these issues. Yes they voted to split.

You know I’ve been doing the work of the church a very long time. The thing God has taught me over and over is that churches resemble hospitals a lot! Full of wonderful people but often filled with wounded, hurt and angry individuals as well. Sometimes that pain, maybe even that sin causes multiple problems which hinders the mercy and grace of forgiveness.

My experience is that church splits are usually the result of people trying to manipulate people and events for their own reasons. Could be rule keeping, (we have to do it in a certain way in order to look a certain way) maybe someone doesn’t feel they are getting the respect they believe is due them, could even be over worship styles. My point? Pride and selfishness are always at the root of the divide no matter how you try to dress it up.

In James 4:1-3, “What causes fights and quarrels among you? Don’t they come from your desires that battle within you? You want something but you don’ get it. You kill and covet, but you cannot have what you want. You quarrel and fight. You do not have, because you do not ask God. When you ask, you do not receive, because you ask with wrong motives…”

My dear brothers and sisters in Christ we must keep our focus on Jesus Christ. If we don’t then we start to look at the church as an organization for our own ends. As a fellow believer I hurt for you, for God’s work where you are. I pray you will know forgiveness, repentance and renewal. May the peace and grace of our Savior cover you all.

And now, “O LORD, assist us to be diligent in labor and wise in our dealings that we may one day hear the wonderful statement, “Well done, faithful servant; enter into the joy of your Lord.” Amen.