Speaking Frankly – What I’ve Learned About Doing Church


As a pastor, there were things I discovered that seemed so essential to me.  I did my best to communicate them from the pulpit.  But no matter how inspired my sermons were, the need to reiterate these basics never appeared to diminish.  Since I no longer have to deal with the toes of church people I squashed on Sunday, I feel free to share these with you as directly as might be necessary.  I will understand if you choose to read with sugar bowl at hand.  A spoon full now and again may make the reading experience more enjoyable!

  • It’s not about you; it’s all about Jesus.  Don’t be satisfied with just knowing that … Let it seep into you until it merges with your DNA.
  •  It’s not about your pastor.  That poor sap is as much a sinful human being as you are.
  • It’s not about you; your favorite hymns, your injured sensibilities over the new carpet color, or the talk of pulling the plug on your pet project.
  • “Tithing” means giving ten percent, period.
  • Doing church is about loving God with all your (plural, as in, “All together now!”) hearts, souls, minds, and strength, loving other people as well as you love yourselves, and going beyond the church walls to make more followers of Jesus and teaching them his commands.
  • It’s not about the pastor.  As a fallible human being, at some point the pastor will screw up. Please do not storm away from the church, stop giving, and begin murmuring in the parking lot to recruit supporters.  Check out the Bible for lots of great ways to react appropriately.
  • Don’t let the thing of “10% of net or gross?” get in your way.  Pick one and start giving.
  • The little taste of Scripture that you get on Sunday is enough to help you survive, but not thrive.  The time we live is not a good one to be spiritually anemic.  Get grazing on God’s Word.
  • Yes!  Giving ten percent is scary.  It’s supposed to be.  Trusting God 100% isn’t easy until you’ve done it for a lifetime.
  • If you claim that you don’t know how to pray, you must not know the Lord’s Prayer.
  • Speaking of which, tithing will require you to believe God really does hear you pray, “Give me today my daily bread”.
  • Learn to forgive.  Begin with the pastor.
  • Pssst.  Worship is meant to be joyful.
  • Do you remember what commands of Jesus Christians are to know and teach?  Love God with everything, love others, and make disciples!  Pretty simple, right?
  • If you know those commands, then you know what God’s purpose is for your life for the rest of the week!  Maybe even for the rest of your life!
  • It’s not about you.  Learn.  To.  Forgive.  Loving God and loving others (see above) means it’s very important.
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8 thoughts on “Speaking Frankly – What I’ve Learned About Doing Church

  1. Pastor Tom – I thoroughly enjoyed this post and it comes at a key point for me personally regarding church. I would like to reblog it if you don’t mind. -Chris

  2. Very nicely said. I will use this in my prison ministry–especially the part where you say to get Him into your DNA!! God bless you and yours richly!! Bobbi

  3. Pingback: It is (NOT) all about me – a summer of epiphanies continues! | pangelinguagloriosi

    • Wow. I am always amazed how Jesus can use my puny thoughts to make a difference in someone else. I’m overjoyed to kno that those words were used to move you on your journey. I took a look at your blog, and got a sense of where you’ve come from. Well done!
      PT

  4. Pingback: Examining my epiphany, part 1 « pangelinguagloriosi

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