G'ampa C's Blog

Friday, January 26, 2007

The Cloud of Witnesses

Mike's post today was about how preachers were supported in their early (student) days by small churches. It made me wonder about our youth, and what I do to support them. It could be that the way the young are received and treated by the older generation has a lasting effect on their spirituality. Do we become for our youth a great cloud of witnesses, cheering them on and supporting them, or do we not have time for them?

It has become normal for our church to have baptisms after church on Wednesday nights, not by decree, but by choice of the "dunk-ee". When such an event is announced, I am convinced that every person who can possibly do so should show up, even if they don't know the person. It's a matter of support, of involvement.

What is the message we send our youth? As a member of an "older generation" (I can say that since I'm over 50...), am I a benefit to our youth? Do they view me as someone who supports them in their walk? Am I one of a cloud of witnesses?

Saturday, January 20, 2007

Traditions Becoming Law

We talked last week in our group about traditions becoming law... how things we do become habits and then become absolutes, and how we pass those things down to our kids without thinking about it. Some of the things we talked about were:
1. How we organize our worship services and church. For a hundred years the Church of Christ has had Sunday morning, Sunday night and Wednesday night services, without any real scriptural guidance to do so, but it somehow became law. What would it be like for the church to meet all day, fellowshipping, sharing, watching the children play and pray? We have no guidance for a church to even own a building. Our expectations for a worship service are based on our history less than how the Spirit might lead us.
2. We never use saltine crackers for communion, yet the OT is specific: You shall not make bread without salt. We never use real (alcoholic)wine for the cup, even though that was apparently the norm.
3. We don't let our little ones eat communion with us, even though the Passover (from which the meal arises) required it.
4. We don't communicate with each other in worship service. (Eyes to the front, no talking, no communicating). Why is that?

I'm not in the format of being overly critical of our past...it has brought me to the present. I'm just wondering about things we take for granted as the "right way" because we haven't thought it out. Anyone else have something to share on that?

Sunday, January 14, 2007


After the New Year, we embarked on a rapid-fire trip to Lincoln, Nebraska via Arkansas. We picked up my mother in Arkansas and drove to Lincoln so we could see my grand daughter (and her mom and dad...ahem...). Mom was pleased to see her first great-grandchild for the first time.

I remember when Laura was tiny, wondering what in the world we were going to do, but having a sense of pride and responsibility and protective-ness(?) unlike anything else I have experienced. Being a grandpa is different, but similar. I can afford to give Kyleigh my undivided attention for a while, and she loves it. After I have spoiled her a bit, we pack up and come back to Texas. (There may be a sermon hiding in there somewhere.)

Kyleigh is very pretty, and the fact that my opinion is prejudiced does not change the fact. She loves her parents, both of them, and is so responsive to them when they come up to her or hold her. It took a day or two before she responded well to me, and I think she will probably be a little hesitant with strangers.

She loves to have a soft blanket pulled over her face, which is something her mother probably set up by pulling her hair over Kyleigh's face. She enjoys an early form of Peek-a-boo, too. She does not (NOT) usually want to go to bed, but they are managing to get her enough rest that she is healthy and happy. She has a lot of personality and already knows what she likes and doesn't like. She has favorite toys and sounds. When she is upset, she wants to hear her mom sing "The wheels on the Bus" and no other song will do....She likes to be carried facing out. She likes Scrabble, but I have yet to see her play all of her tiles in one word; in fact, she mostly tries to eat her tiles.

Kyleigh is a blessing. I loved getting to see her and taking my mother to see her. My mother has a strong sense of family and was feeling a little left out, I think. I pray that Kyleigh will grow in the wisdom and strength of the Lord, and that her angel will always stand in the Father's presence on her behalf. I pray that her parents will model the love of Jesus before her, not just to her, but to all others as well. I pray that she will never stray from her spot at the Lord's feet, as we adults tend to do from time to time. As Mike says, I anxiously await the day when her lips will confess the name of Jesus. When she knows the Lord well enough to believe He is the Son of God, and chooses to confess Him and become one with Him. That will be another day of joy for me.

I am indeed treated .....................better than I deserve.