Sunday, June 21, 2009

Is this worth the trouble? Well, if there's no opposition...

So I've been part of a team doing sermon study guides for our church. Here's how it works. For any given weekend, two of us sign up to crank it out. We get sermon notes by Thursday, and collaborate on the weekend's guide, which we send to the staff guy by Saturday morning. He polishes it up and posts it on the website (example sermon page and study guide).

This week was a little rough. My partner in crime, who like my lovely wife happens to be named "Carol", had a pile of stuff suddenly come up -- work-related things that ended up taking a whole lot of her time. This is not a frequent or regular occurrence for her (we've collaborated in the past more than once). And though you may find this hard to believe, there were some enthusiastic discussions in my house about how much time I was spending on projects -- not just the sermon study guide, but also on trying to upgrade the computer, etc.

Anyway, we produced the guide and sent it off by Friday morning (yes, we finished early). As Carol and I discussed the guide, she mentioned how all these things had come up suddenly in her life.

That's when it hit me. That was no coincidence. I believe there are spiritual forces at work in the world today, and not all of these forces are good. You might think that's silly, but my observation is that often, when we're involved with serving God or serving the Church, pardon my French but merde happens.

And when stuff like that happens, I take it as a reminder that we're doing something important (otherwise they wouldn't bother).

Before that Friday morning discussion, I was wondering if this was all worth it. Couldn't I leave the sermon study guides to someone else? It seemed like it wasn't worth the trouble. But that Friday morning talk reminded me that some kinds of trouble might be a sign that what we're doing absolutely is important, that it is worth the trouble.

When there's no trouble, when there's no opposition, I guess that's when it's time to wonder if we're doing anything worthwhile.

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