I felt led to stop by a local church yesterday to talk with a minister. It was a church that I have never attended. I have a home church with a great minister, but he wasn't available to talk to me at the moment, so I just drove to this other church. You know how it is sometimes when you just have to talk to someone at that very moment. Anyway, what a strange incident! Although the church had regular business hours, I found the door locked and had to hit a buzzer on a speaker and tell them why I was there just to get in. Even my bank doesn't have such "security". An elderly gentleman finally came to the door. By this time, I was practically in tears needing some Godly guidance from a pastor or minister. I asked him if I could see a minister and he told me that they were all gone. At lunch? Running errands? No. He said they were gone-all 4 walked out! I was completely and totally in shock!
The man was very helpful, however, and he did call a minister that met me in one hour. We had a very nice talk. I didn't ask for too many details about what happened with the four ministers, but was told that they left because they were being told what to preach and how to minister to the church members. Apparently, the pastor's preaching, which was completely Bible-based, stepped on a few toes, and the people just didn't want to hear the Truth. I don't know, that is just what I was told. How often does this happen today in churches? How often are preachers told to "tone down" the message as not to offend anyone, or offend the least possible amount of people? When I read in the Gospels, Jesus never "toned down" His messages. He was constantly stepping on the toes of those around Him. But Jesus told the absolute Truth! Would we want anything less from our ministers whom Jesus has called? Sometimes I don't like what I read in the Bible because it completely convicts my heart and soul. But that is exactly what I need! It sometimes hurts, but the Truth is what is important.
Jesus said in John 8:31-32, "If you hold to my teaching, then you are really my disciples. Then you will know the Truth, and the Truth shall set you free."
Lord, please help us to accept the things in Your Word that are hard to swallow. As hard as it can be for us to hear the Truth, please help us to absorb it and apply it to every aspect of our lives. In Jesus name, Amen.