opiate or way of life?

Whew! Weekend’s over, now we can rest! Well, not really… but it WAS a very busy weekend. And even though the sun is shining this morning as predicted, The Mom did manage to get her garden work done on Saturday. The pant-hemming got put off instead–AGAIN! Maybe she’ll just have to bring it with her for Thanksgiving! And today maybe she’ll get out for a long-missed WALK!

Notes, notes, notes… one is definitely tempted to “skip it” in these busy times, but, it is part of our morning Quiet Time. Anyway, we do manage to make shorter summaries sometimes… sometimes!

Sermon first. Since our series in 1 Thessalonians (“Church on Fire”) had come to the part about persecution (1 Thess. 2:17-3:10), we made this Sunday our Day of Prayer for the Persecuted Church. Things started by everyone having their Bible confiscated as they came into the Sanctuary, so we got to experience a little of what that would feel like. Sharon stood up to give the Call to Worship, and gleefully said “Look, I’ve got a Bible!” only to have it promptly taken from her by the Bible Police… this exercise had the effect of helping us remember a good reason for scripture-memorization, as she then suggested that we each turn to our neighbour and quote our favourite passage. The Mom’s problem is trying to decide which one; but Nancy thought of the perfect one for both she & Sam, for this weekend: “Be anxious about nothing… ” etc. Also besides the sermon, we saw a film on the Persecuted Church, and spent some time praying for some specific needs in different countries.

Rob reminded us of the New Testament story where a certain psychic became a Christian, and since she was no longer helping the merchants with their sales of idols by her prophesying for that goddess, there was quite an uproar. Rob wondered if we would effect the same sort of economic downturn, as Christians, if we didn’t act like the world around us–having to buy a new cell phone every week, buying every new toy that comes out, etc. Maybe then we WOULD be persecuted! Many of us prefer to be an admirer of Jesus Christ, rather than a disciple of Him. We tend to whine and complain pretty easily, crying “It’s not fair!” Of course it’s not fair–it was never supposed to be: this is a spiritual battle, not a cake walk. (“We wrestle not against flesh and blood…”)

Religion: something that involves one’s private life; something that IS, as has been said “the opiate of the people”.
Christianity: is NOT a religion, but a way of life.

Rob summed up his sermon by saying: “When a church is truly set on fire by the Holy Spirit, it won’t be long before someone else tries to burn it down.”

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