Confession. I don’t take off enough. My wife reminds me of this. My memory proves it. Our church is generous. Not only have I been around long enough to accrue four weeks of vacation, early on I was given four weekends a year (one each quarter). So, I could conceivably take off eight Sundays a year. Add to that the opportunity to either preach a "revival" or do a "conference another couple of weeks (read, Sundays) and that would make ten.
We have a couple of great staff members who do a great job hosting the text and challenging us to follow Jesus for the glory of God and the blessing of the world. Currently they are leading worship each week. Sunday Jason preached and next month Nathan will in my absence. So, I like to be at my church even when I am not preaching. I need to hear "with" my community of faith and not just "speak to/for."
Saturday we drove to Tulsa and stayed near Broken Arrow. We took in, "Little Miss Sunshine." Certainly and adult film but one every parent should view. I may offer something of a review but think I would like to see it again first. We ate dinner at the "Texas Roadhouse" and then made our way to the hotel to watch the OU game.
Sunday we got up ate breakfast at IHOP and drove to Sapulpa. We arrived and found the church sign noted its pastor, "Pastor Paul Littleton." We ventured inside having never been to Fatih Baptist Church before. The folks were wonderfully friendly. Apologetically we heard how many folks must have "gone to the lake." Paul is preaching through the Gospel of Matthew. It was good to be in worship with Fatih Baptist Church and Paul and his family.
After lunch at the Rib Crib we visited in their home for almost an hour. We saw the progress on the "remodeling" projects, me the two dogs (Boxers) and listened as Wes and Victor revved it up on the Playstation.
We headed home. Sunday evening we attended services at Kaleo – an emerging church that meets at First Church of the Nazarene of OKC. We know some of the folks who lead. We also wanted to hear Tim lead worship. John hosted the Gospel text from the Lectionary – Mark 7. We found ourselves again enjoying fellowship and the Word with the people of God.
Several times yesterday we were asked with some disbelief, "You took the Sunday off and still went to church?!" We do not often get to enjoy worship as a family – seated together, listening, singing, praying and celebrating Communion together. When we get the occasion, we find it a great joy. We may feel the Church is not all it should be, but we do love the Church – time with the people of God is refreshing to us.