Opinion - Word&Way



How does a technologically-challenged person like me shift from closing the church for meetings and — in one week — go to online streaming? Very carefully.

One of the challenges we face in understanding God’s sovereignty is that God may allow certain things to happen that we do not understand, and we must reckon with how these things can become challenges to our faith and understanding of God’s power.

By the time you read this, an area in Newton County, Arkansas, once known as Dogpatch USA, will have been auctioned off to the highest bidder. After years of weather damage and decay, the former amusement park will be sold off for what it is — a property in horrific disrepair.

After worship on Sunday, March 15, our church family discussed what we would do next. For more than three years we had had Sunday lunch together, but there was a sense this would be the last time for a while. After a few days of prayerful consideration we decided to try a “drive-in” worship service. Everyone would remain in their vehicles on the church parking lot while I led worship and preached from the front steps.

I’m not sure why my water bottle sticker prompts questions. Perhaps it’s the question that draws them in. They’ve heard the phrase “what would Jesus do” many times, but "what would Dolly do?" is a new question for them to ponder.

All of you old-timers like me who grew up in Baptist, Methodist, or other “evangelical” churches know the name Fanny Crosby, the blind woman who wrote more gospel songs/hymns than anyone else in history. She was born 200 years ago this month.

A Sunday when we didn’t have enough people in our building for a pickup basketball game turned out to be a Sunday on which our ministry may have been broader than it has ever been.

The Hebrews were instructed to observe a Sabbath year every seven years and a Jubilee year every 50. Even a simpleton such as I can see how complicated those instructions are.

If there’s a silver lining to a global pandemic, perhaps it’s having a bit more time on our hands to read. If you don’t know where to start, here are six classic and contemporary works that offer a helpful perspective on the state we find ourselves in — and are terrific reads.

After watching historic political events recently unfold and talking to dear friends on both sides of the issues at hand, I am once again reminded of how dangerous it is to live in a bubble of our own making. A political bubble has its obvious challenges, but a spiritual bubble can affect us just as much.