On ushering

JP: Bert Perry (BikeBubba) on ushering at church:

Top 11 reasons for men to be ushers at church


11. You get to actually meet people in your church outside of potlucks and the obligatory shaking of hands during the service.

10. Your wife might like how you look in a suit and tie. Or a person who could become your wife might like how you look in a suit and tie, if you happen to be single.

9. You are forced to look people in the eye, shake hands, and interact with them. It’s a great way to learn to work with people.

8. Learning to be comfortable in a suit and tie will serve you well in your career.

7. It gives you an extra incentive to get to church with enough time to settle your mind on the wonderful time of worship. No more skidding into the parking lot with seconds to spare while urging the kids to get out of the car NOW.

6. Seeing the faces of those people coming to church and interacting with them gives you more reason and ability to pray for them.

5. You get a chance to interact on a closer basis with other men who happen to be ushering as well.

4. You get to model the reality that church isn’t just for women. There the men are; greeting, handing out bulletins, taking the offering, and helping people to seats.

3. You have an excuse to upgrade your wardrobe and get some exercise to be ready for Sunday ushering. Did I mention that your wife, or wife to be, just might like how you look in a suit and tie?

2. Worried about how someone might take advantage of churchgoers? You are part of the security team. (consider a carry permit where allowed, or at least pepper spray, just in case)

1. Did I mention that your wife, or wife to be, might think that there is something attractive about a man serving God as an usher while wearing a suit and tie?

Several of our young adults usher (I know Ben and Jerermy do!) and we appreciate them for their service.


God takes care of His own!

JP: Good blog entry by Ellis Murphree.

Anxiety, stress, and …. “tomorrow”…


As I’ve watched the news and conversed with friends I’ve made over the years who are in various positions within different manufacturing companies around the country, I’ve seen a lot of speculation, fear, and just pure uneasiness and anxiety. These are frightening times, my friends, and the reality is that they are likely to get worse before they get better. So what are we to do, as Christians? How should we react? What should our conversation with our unrepentant friends be during these times?

My thoughts keep going back to the 6th chapter of Matthew’s Gospel beginning in verse 25 and continuing through verse 34 (ESV):

“Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life? And why are you anxious about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin, yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. But if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today is alive and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will he not much more clothe you, O you of little faith? Therefore do not be anxious, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For the Gentiles seek after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them all. But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.

“Therefore do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.”

Sometimes we Christians are very good at mindlessly and mechanically quoting this passage when times get tough. But while we can quote these verses, I wonder how much time we’ve spent meditating on the truths contained within them? The 34th verse is one of the greatest comments in Scripture regarding the human inclination to borrow trouble! Essentially, Christ says, “Stop worrying about what’s not even happened yet! There’s enough to deal with here and now to be worrying about what tomorrow may or may not bring!” The truth is that God makes a stark promise to us in this small passage…..”Seek me FIRST, and I’ll take care of you”. Friends, this isn’t a promise of comfort, wealth, nice clothing, and shelter….it’s a promise of being sustained by the One who knows what we need…the One who knows us better than we know ourselves….the One who has demonstrated love to us in a way that we will never fully grasp this side of Eternity.

It’s so easy to worry about creature comforts, isn’t it? During the worst of times that I’ve experienced in my lifetime, I’ve always had it pretty good. While I’ve gone without food before, I’ve never gone hungry. While I’ve been without a home before, I’ve never been without shelter. While I’ve been without money before, I’ve never had my basic needs unmet. I praise His name that I haven’t yet had to deal with truly impossibly hard times during my marriage (three-and-a-half month joblessness, notwithstanding). I don’t know what the future holds, but I do know Who holds the future. As trite and cute as that might sound, there is a confidence and peace in that knowledge that surpasses my vocabulary!

So Christian, don’t worry! I’m certainly not advocating that we blindly live in the moment and just plow headlong into every day like nothing bad will ever happen to us, but let’s not be….. “stressed out” about things. Remember, the One who cares for the birds and flowers will certainly take care of His own!