I appreciate people like Phil and Sarah. For their ministry? Yes, well, that too.
But a couple whose house is decked in Marvel, who takes their engagement pictures in a comic store, and who will wait 3 hours just to get into an Anime-Con… that’s a crazy-devoted couple! I love it. They’re devoted to their passions outside of church.
I feel completely comfortable lifting them up as good examples because they are EQUALLY (and more) devoted to their ministries, too! They never miss church (a weekly passion), they’re at church functions, and they run the weekly children’s ministry here on Wednesday nights.
I get bothered by people who are passionate about things OUTSIDE of church, and then excuse themselves from the most minor things IN church. They’re the crowd that says, “Oh, sorry I couldn’t make it to my nursery duty. I was at a concert until 3am on Saturday night.”
What are your passions? What are you devoted to?
I’m not even accusing. I’m just asking. Our passions determine our devotions. That kind of the essence of the first couple commandments—no other gods and no idols means that we keep GOD as our main passion. Other things MUST fall below him, or something’s out of whack.
When someone is devoted to a passion, nothing interferes. They’ll go to extremes to follow their passion.
When I was 11 or 12, I was a pretty good soccer player. Our team made it to the tournament, which was a Saturday. Winning on Saturday led to a Sunday game… uh oh. Which passion would I serve? Soccer or God (church)? My parents didn’t even have to consider it. Church. I called the coach from the church phone right after services. If we’d won, we had a 1pm game, which I could play in. “Did we win?” I asked. “We needed you, Ryan! We lost,” the coach replied.
There was no 1pm game.
I’m still alive. In fact… I’m not even scarred, emotionally. I promise (*secretly stifles tears).
I vividly remember that event from almost 20 years ago because I learned a good lesson from my parents about being devoted to the right things.
Thanks for being here today. And every week. It says a lot about you.
– Bro. Ryan