Thursday, March 18, 2010

To church or not to church.

Sometimes I get tongue tied explaining why church is so valuable to a believer. Mostly when I feel like I'm put on the spot by someone who doesn't have a positive opinion of church. I got this email not long ago that explains it in a word picture (for those visual learners like me) that I think is pretty clear. It's old school and a dramatic, which I like here. Read on below.


A member of a certain church who previously had been attending services regularly stopped going. After a few weeks the pastor decided to visit him.

It was a chilly evening. The pastor found the man at home alone sitting by a blazing fire. Guessing the reason for his pastor's visit, the man welcomed him, led him to a comfortable chair near the fire place and waited.

The pastor made himself at home but said nothing. In the grave silence he contemplated the dance of the flames around the burning logs. After some minutes, the pastor took the fire tongs, carefully picked up a brightly burning ember and placed it to one side of the hearth all alone, then he sat back in his chair, still silent.

The host watched all this in quiet contemplation. As the one lone ember's flame flickered and diminished, there was a momentary glow, then its fire was no more. Soon it was cold and dead.

Not a word had been spoken since the initial greeting. The pastor glanced at his watch and realized it was time to leave. He slowly stood up, picked up the cold, dead ember, and placed it back in the middle of the fire. Immediately it began to glow once more, with the light and warmth of the burning coals around it.

As the pastor reached the door to leave, his host said, with a tear running down his cheek, 'Thank you so much for the visit and especially the firey sermon...I will be back in church next Sunday'.

Why do you go to church?

Wisdom and Grace in Christ,

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