ONE OUT OF TEN
Each Sunday I am at a different church preaching the Gospel and sharing the good work we are doing through The Community of St. Dysmas. So far this new year I have found myself at St. John in Creagerstown (north of Frederick)
and St. John in Parkville (north of Baltimore). I am impressed with the good work we Lutheran Christians are doing around the corner and around the world. Unfortunately, I wish we had more people in our churches to observe and participate this good work!
Which leads to my point. The Lutheran church (along with other mainline denominations) are going through huge changes. I won’t say that never before in the history of Christendom have we experienced such a decline nor
even in American church history. But I am led to note that this is not our parents (or grandparents) church anymore. For instance in the 1950s everyone went to worship. The question was not whether a person went to church,
but to what church they went. Church life was as American as…well the Flag and apple pie!
Today the question is reversed. More likely the question is “do you attend worship…anywhere” or even “do you know who Jesus is”. No wonder the roads are deserted, and the youth soccer fields are full on Sunday morning.
Society has shifted away from worship of God to worship of all kinds of other activities. I am not sure finger pointing is worth the time or effort. As the expression goes, “It is what it is”.
I find myself reflecting on the Bible Story of the 10 healed lepers of which only one returned to Jesus to say thank you (a foreigner no less). I must admit, I increasingly feel like the ONE who returned to Jesus in this modern day culture. I am glad that I number myself with the one and thank for all you
good people who also count yourself with the ONE in the story.
The sanctuary is the right place for folks who know from whom come their blessings to be on Sunday morning. Even if you could sleep in, or would pick different hymns, or not agree with the sermon or wonder who that person sitting
down the pew from you is! Where else can we say thanks to our God, hear about Jesus and receive Him in the meal with our brothers and sisters in Christ! So I am thankful you count yourself with the ONE in the Story!
Now we need to figure out how to get the other NINE into the Sanctuary with us!