Good Stuff At Tent Pegs

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The blog roll at the left is my nearly daily trip through the web. (It needs updating, BTW, which I will do once I switch hosts.) One of the highlights for me is Tent Pegs. Patrick is the preaching minister at the Rochester (MI) COC. Almost makes me want to move back to Michigan (For the record, that's a comment on Patrick, not my current situation.). I love his insight, his writing style and his honesty and realism.

His last two posts, as many do, really moved me. To encourage you to go read, here are a couple of snippets:

From "Call Me Isaac:"

Confession time: one of the reasons I am a preacher is because of gratitude... but there is another reason. While I am thrilled that God didn't leave me in a ditch by the side of the road (which would have been His right and no one would have blamed him,least of all me), one of the reasons I work in a church setting is so that I'll show up on Sunday. You read that right: I am not sure I would attend if I didn't have to. Church is hard for me. Interaction with God's people is good for me and I know my soul needs it... but it has never felt natural. I don't get excited about church events and I struggle to fit in.


All of this, perversely, makes me love Jesus even more. If He will let someone like me, who cannot draw closer, work for him, share the good news, and bring his meager talents to the table -- what a wonderful savior He is! He even loves people like me: his backward kids, the underachievers, the kid who never makes cover of "Perfectly Adequate Preacher Monthly." Thanks, God. You're just what I need. Call me Isaac if you want to, Lord, but keep calling me nonetheless.

Although I am a bit more social (I'm frequently the last to leave church, just 'cause I love to hang around and talk), I can relate to his 'Isaac' mindset. Until recently there was precious little Christian music I could tolerate (still not a lot, but more). I rarely have one book on my 'currently reading' list, unlike many Christian bloggers & leaders who must read two books at a time, one with the right eye and one with the left, to get through all the books they read. I don't fit the mold of super-committed Christian leader, reading the Bible through each year plus several non-fiction books. I just love God with all my heart and try to live my best for him.

From "Questions For Your Family:"

Another question: Who needs Jesus? Yes, yes, we all know that everyone needs Jesus but that's not the point of the question. Let me use a story to illustrate it. If my father goes to Wal-Mart to buy something today he will hesitate before he goes to a check out lane. He will first pray silently, without giving an outward sign: "Lord, who needs encouragement? Who needs something from you?" He will then get in the lane of the person who seems the most tired, harried, or un-blessed, even if that line is the longest (and full of people who plan to use coupons and write out of town checks). Who needs Jesus? And to whom can I be Jesus?

Warning: these questions will lead to bizarre behavior. They will lead people who love one place to live in another. They will lead you to give away your lunch money. They will lead you to stop when everyone else is rushing forward... and ask questions. I -- who am the least social person I know -- am made to stop and help someone who is struggling with their luggage, or with English, at the airport. And as I leave them and wave off their thanks I have been known to say. "It's all right. Jesus just wanted you to know he loves you. He wanted to say hi" and then just walk away.

There are three other questions, good question we should be asking ourselves more often. I hope I never get into a checkout line again. I also hope I can have the courage to help someone and say something like that afterwords.

I hope you read Tent Pegs regularly. It's one of the highlights of my rounds through the blogosphere. Patrick travels a bit, preaching here and there. I've been known to get to the Detroit area (very) occasionally too. Hopefully our paths will cross one day. Until then, I'll just keep reading and learning.

1 Comment

I read it, too, but my reasons for starting were more sentimental than spiritual. We were members of that congregation when I was in 8th and 9th grade and my Wednesday night teacher there turned me on to C.S. Lewis. We are still friends with a family from there, and that was back in 1970!

My wife and I are still thinking about the 4 questions one and how we can incorporate it into training our 9 and 10 year old boys.

Great Link!

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  • I read it, too, but my reasons for starting were more sentimental than spiritual. We were members of that congregation when I was in 8th and 9th grade and my Wednesday night teacher there turned me on to C.S. Lewis. We a...