Monday, March 09, 2009

do i dare speak?

a few months ago (more like 7) i spoke at my home church about "why i don't like christians". before you start jumping to conclusions, i was included in that list of reasons why. it went over well with most people at my church, but i assumed it sealed my coffin. i would no longer be asked to preach (i have a problem with wanting to shock people).

that really didn't bother me that much. i never looked at myself as the preacher type. even though i did kind of pastor a church for a year and i still am a youth pastor, but i have never felt comfortable in the position to tell people what God's word says behind a huge wooden box.

yet, last weekend my pastor asked me to preach on sunday morning. i was shocked, but i was up to the challenge. all week long my mind tried to figure out what i would speak about. so around saturday night it finally came to me (or i thought i did). i was going to talk about "coming to terms with salvation".

i have never been a fan of the pray after me prayer and i believed there was more to my salvation than a quick prayer. i don't believe that salvation can be understood over night or within a year.

it was going to be a message showing how we grow into salvation.

now i am not saying that i was not saved when i said my prayer. i just don't believe i understood it. it was not as easily explained as i had been told in the past or as i was trained to do (many nights i would wrestle with the way things were done in the name of God while in the ministry).

sunday morning while "teaching" my sunday school class, one of the students suggested that i change the title of the message to "evolution of my faith".

speaking at a small country church and throwing the word evolution into the mix could always be considered dangerous, but i knew my church family would listen even if they didn't agree.

needless to say i was very nervous, but it went over well. i confessed my fear and questioning of the Bible. how i have a hard time with the apostle paul's writings, and struggle with coming to terms with being a father.

but when riley was born i fell in love with him and i also started to finally understand the sacrifice God made. 27 years and i still don't understand it completely, but slowly getting there.

i was also able to make fun of southland Bible institute. point out the insane ways they controlled young christians to form to their screwed up view of faith (you always need to make people laugh).
thank God i realized they were full of IT. :)

after the service some people said some really nice things to me, but the person i wanted the approval from the most loved it (angie would honestly tell me if it sucked or not, but not in those words).

on a side note:
i went to see watchmen last night in lexington with tyler and nate. awesome movie. awkward moments.


Zach! said...

Ha! Those awkward moments in Watchmen were the worst!

Imagine seeing them with all of your coworkers....

Chad Estes said...

Is there an audio or video of the message?

Tommy said...

sorry chad... small country church... you would have been bored anyway.

Chad Estes said...

It doesn't sound boring.

(I don't often request sermons these days)

Tommy said...

well, you are too kind my friend...