Tuesday, June 21, 2005

Late Nights

Something's got to give. So many obligations. I wonder if I give proper attention to any of them.

Here's the deal: I am married, have three boys (21, 18, & 4 years old), pastor a church, and have a full-time salaried job. And there are only 168 hours in a week. And did I mention that I like to sleep?

So my life (and yours) is a matter of prioritizing. I shuffle cards pretty good (I didn't learn that in church!) and sometimes I just want to shuffle my priorities and whatever comes out on top gets my attention. But then I begin to rationalize why each priority deserves to be the priority. Then I pull what's left of my hair out.

Since prioritizing can't be a matter of random selection, there must be a way to organize priorities. If I organize them as listed above (wife, kids, pastorate, job) I don't think many people would object. That seems reasonable, doesn't it? I would be an unfit husband if I didn't put her first; and I don't want to be an unfit husband. I am supposed to love my wife as Christ loved the church - he gave himself for the church. I don't want to be an unfit husband.

My children - even grown - are a blessing and gift from God. You and I know kids who've been neglected by a parent. That's an awful thing to have happen to a kid. I decided a long time ago that my kids would have no reason to feel neglected by their father. God chose the image of "father" to describe his relationship to us. I want to become as much like that image as possible. The boys have to be a high priority. Who would object to that?

Being a pastor is a tremendous joy, honor, and privilege. It's a high calling. The church is full of people uniquely gifted by God's Spirit to be honorable tools in his hands. God works through all sorts of people to accomplish his work. Pastors are one of those he uses. He called some to be apostles and prophets and evangelists and pastors and teachers. And he called all of us to his work. He called me to be a pastor and teacher. The God of the universe called me. That has to be a priority, too.

Since I serve a small church I must have other employment to provide for my family. There are two reasons I must place a priority on my job. One is that it is how I primarily provide for may family. "If a man won't work, he shouldn't eat." I like to eat! I want my family to eat and enjoy electricity and have clothes to wear and all the other things people need to survive. And I want them to have a little of what they want. So my job is important. It's important for another reason. I represent God when I work for my employer. I don't want my coworkers to think Christians are lazy and God is indifferent. I want to make an impression on them so that they cannot use me as an objection to becoming a Christian themselves. I don't want the hierarchy of the company to find me mooching off them and thus gain a bad impression of Christianity. So I do my work as if working for the Lord. Wouldn't you?

So maybe just writing the words "Wife," "Kids," "Pastorate," and "Job" on separate index cards and shuffling them is not such a bad idea after all.

Here's a better idea. "Seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well." (Matthew 6:33)

Rather than having a list of priorities I simply have A priority. In pursuing God's kingdom (his realm of authority in my life) and his righteousness (his standard of right living) my relationship with my wife and children will be perfect; my service at pastor will be honorable, and my job performance will be outstanding.

Sure, I still keep "To Do" lists because I have to remind myself what needs to be done each day. The very first thing on the list is a quiet time with God. I like to do that very early in the morning - it doesn't always happen then, but that's my preference. I try to seek God before doing anything else because none of the rest of it matters without him.

It's late and I have an appointment with my Lord in the morning - early! That's the one thing that won't give.

Friday, June 17, 2005


Bro. David is a dear friend of mine. That's my greatest relationship with him. Besides that, he's been my pastor and mentor. He taught me so much about caring for the flock and developing believers. He has a great heart for both evangelism and discipleship; that's a unique combination because most of us (Christians) tend to lean heavily toward one or the other.

Either at the expense of the other is a mistake. How many of us know people who came into a saving relationship with Christ, made the public profession of their faith, were baptized into the fellowship of a New Testament church, participated for a while, then faded from the skyline of the local church? Honestly, we are blessed if that does not describe us.

Then there are those (I lean this way when I'm not trying to be balanced) who focus so much on growing the Christians we have in church that we don't do much to add to the number of Christians we have in church. It's safer to prod Christians to grow than it is to ask an old toughened sinner to come to Christ. Oddly, the success rate is usually just the opposite.

David excels at both. What an example he is to me. I'm glad God intertwined our paths. And he did it at just the right time. There's no telling where I would be had I not served with and under and for Bro. David. I'm praying for him.

Wild and Sore

Yikes! It had been a long time since I'd done that. As a matter of fact, it's been a long time since I've done much of anything that active.

We went to Wild River Country yesterday. It's a water park. The first waterslide I ever rode was in the parking lot of a hotel in some vacation destination...years ago. It wasn't much. Then there was the slide built on the side of a hill in a neighboring town. All concrete...rough concrete.

Now the slides are made of fiberglass or something like that. Smoother. We used to ride down any slide any way...head first, feet first; with a mat, with an inner tube, or sans device. And there weren't long lines. Run fron the bottom to the top, over and over again. All day long.

That was a long time ago. I'm more mature now. Actually, I'm just older now. If I still could I would have run from the bottom to the top, over and over again. All day long. But I couldn't. Instead, I had to rest at the bottom of each trip down the slide.

But the weather was cooperating. I would've died if the sun had been shining.

I highly recommend a trip to Wild River Country (or any water park) to anyone who wants to have a good time. I had my wife and two of the three boys. The only way it could have been better was to have all the boys with me and more peanut M&Ms. And they have to be peanut...a plain M&M is just a good waste of chocolate.

Thursday, June 16, 2005

Frank's Wig

So I'm filling out the profile for this blog. I didn't answer many of the questions because if you know me you know me and if you don't you don't. Since this blog is not about me but about my worldview, it doesn't really matter if you know that much about me; you'll get to know me through the postings.

But I thought the space provided for a creative story about a random topic was pretty cool. I asked for a new question several times and finally found this topic intriguing: "The children are waiting! Tell them a story about a bald frog and a wig."

The space only holds 150 characters - what I wrote wouldn't fit. So here it is.

One day Frank the frog leaped off his lily pad and landed with a big splash in the middle of the pond. Frogs usually don't care much about keeping their heads above water; after all, they live in a pond! But Frank struggled to swim to the shore with his head held high above the water. Ted the turtle laughed at him and Polly the perch just rolled her big eyes at him.

But it didn't phase Frank; he kept reaching with his tiny front legs and swishing with his huge back legs until he made it to the banks of the pond with every hair on his head perfectly dry. That's why he worked so hard to keep his head above water...his hair. Most frogs don't have any hair. As a matter of fact, NO FROGS HAVE HAIR!! Except Frank.

Frank's a little different. He's an individual. He does his own thing. He's like a fish out of water. (Oops, sorry about that.)

Well, it happened like this. There was a little girl fishing from the banks of the pond one day. She came often; usually with her Daddy. The little girl was very pretty. She always wore blue jeans, white sneakers, a pink t-shirt, and a yellow baseball cap. And Kermit the Frog sunglasses. I really think that's why Frank liked to swim close to the bank and watch her. She must have been about 7 years old and she sure loved fishing with her Daddy.

Then it happened. Summer was almost over and Frank had learned from earlier summers that the kids quit coming to the pond and start going to school. Polly the perch had told him that; but what did she know about school?

So Frank knew he had to make it to shore that day because it might be the last day the little girl came fishing. There he was acting like he was soaking up the warm sunshine while sitting on that rock. But really he was watching her.

Then it happened. Her fishing pole was almost bent double. Her Daddy was excited and trying to help her. As he reached for the fishing pole his arm bumped her yellow baseball cap and knocked it off her head onto the grass. Frank had never seen her without her yellow baseball cap. Now it was on the ground and she was struggling to land the biggest fish she had ever hooked.

But Frank lost track of the fishing when he saw her hair. It had been tucked under her cap all summer long but now it was flopping around on top of her head while the fish was pulling at her pole.

Hair. Nobody in the pond had hair. At first it looked strange but Frank began to think it was beautiful. Especially this little girl's hair. It was long and curly and brown. And it looked like a lot of fun. You know, having that stuff balanced on your head and hanging down on your shoulders and in your eyes and over your ears. Frank wanted some of his own.

There aren't any places at the pond to get hair. Frank spent the next two weeks looking for hair in the pond. There was no hair.

Frank knew he had to be creative so he hopped down the path that led away from the pond. He didn't know what was down the path but he knew there was no hair in the pond. Maybe there would be hair at the other end of the path.

Frank was disappointed to see there was no hair at the end of the path. Instead, there was only something called a barber shop. Discouraged, Frank wanted to go back to the pond. But he told himself that if he came this far he could go a little farther and check out this new place.

As he hopped into the barber shop, Frank saw the little girl with the long, curly, brown hair. He mustered all his courage and made his way toward her. When he got to the barber chair where she was sitting he hopped up to the footrest, then to the seat, next the arm, and finally the headrest. He whispered in her ear, "I'm just a bald frog but I would love to have hair like yours. Can you help me?"

She jumped to her feet and acted like she had seen a ghost. Really she had only HEARD a FROG. Frank didn't understand her reaction so he said, "Excuse me, girl. I'm Frank. Just a frog. No hair. See? Your hair is so pretty. Can you help me get hair like yours?"

She ran away.

Frank figured it was time to take matters into his own hands (if he had hands). He jumped from the chair into a pile of hair clippings he spotted just under the counter in the barber shop. Just next to the hair was a blob of mud that must have been tracked in by someone wearing muddy boots. Frank grabbed the mud and stuck it on his bald head. (I bet that looked funny.) Then he placed a few pieces of the hair in the mud. That's one creative frog! He made himself a wig.

As he hopped back to the pond, very proud of his hair, the other residents of the pond stared. First, in shock; then in amazement; then because they couldn't stop staring...and laughing.

That bald frog has worn that wig every minute since. I'm not sure how it stays on; wet mud on a slick frog head??

But I do know that the wig had 17 sprigs of hair in it. I know because I counted them.

Just like God has counted the hairs on your head. He cares that much about you.

Wednesday, June 15, 2005


I'm new to blogging and maybe you are, too. This will be a learning project for me so please check back from time to time. Maybe I'll get better!

Bob's Worldview will be about gobs of stuff as seen through my perspective. I am a Christian who believes the Bible tells it like it is and is relevant today. So, hopefully, you'll see that worldview in my view of the world.

I'll post ideas, reactions, news, and other bits of info and thoughts. The postings and the contents will be random. I'm pretty busy so I hope I don't neglect the blog.

I'm glad you dropped in and hope you come back! Remember, Jesus saves.