Today's Word for Pastors...
Jesus looked at them and said, "With man this is impossible, but not with God; all things are possible with God."
Today's Preaching Insight...
The Worst-Case Scenario
I was in a book store recently and saw a book that caught my eye. I tried to walk out without buying it but I turned around, went back, and picked it up. It is called The Worst-Case Scenario Handbook. It is a little book of about 100 pages, easy to read, and has a lot of cartoons in it. I thought at first it was a joke, but it is a very serious book. The author is in the business of helping people in dangerous situations, and he has assembled a handbook for us to use when we are in a bad situation. I looked at some of his examples of worst-case scenarios. I decided I needed to keep the book with me all the time. Then if I'm ever attacked by a mugger, I can tell him to stop until I've had a chance to refer to the book to find out what I'm supposed to do.
As I read these, my comic mind took over. The author wrote a serious book but it didn't come across as serious to me. For example, what do you do if you are chased by a swarm of African killer bees? The first thing he suggests is to run for cover. (I would have thought that without having the book!) What would you do if you were chased by a charging bull? The first thing you should do is don't antagonize the bull. What if you are chased by a stampede of cattle? The first thing you should do is get out of the way. How do you fend off a shark? You should hit back. What do you do if you find yourself in the line of gunfire? You should get as far away as possible.
In the Peace Corps Handbook given to all Peace Corps volunteers before they go overseas, there is the suggestion of what to do if you are attacked by a python. First of all, you take your knife firmly in your hand and lie down. The python will start to swallow you from the ankles up. You just lie still and quiet, let him come on up until he gets to your waist. He is then immobile, so take your knife and slit his throat. The next time you are chased by a python, remember that.
The Bible has some worst-case scenarios. Have you ever thought about Moses standing before Pharaoh? Moses has been out in the dessert with a bunch of sheep. He smells like them because he didn't get a chance to clean up and change his clothes. God said, "Go down and talk to Pharaoh." He walks into Pharaoh's gilded throne room and Pharaoh has all his flunkies around him. Moses starts pleading his case, "Let my people go." That's a very bad case. All he had was a rod and an invisible God.
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Rethinking the Church
Rethinking the Church: A Challenge to Creative Redesign in an Age of Transition (Baker) is a book that church leaders will find useful. The volume helps pastors and lay leaders work through questions that must be answered if a church is to rethink evangelism, discipleship, ministry, worship, community and the structure of the church
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