Friday, November 26, 2010

Sinners' Anonymous

My friend still goes to church. He returned to church when he had a realization that his pride was separating him from God. He felt he was missing something in his life. He'd had all the 'toys' and the family but he didn't like himself or his work. He'd seen the 'feel good' therapists that executives go to to keep doing the things that make them feel bad but that hadn't helped.
One day he'd walked into a church he'd attended in his childhood and youth. He got down on his kneels there as he'd done so many years before and prayed for help and direction in his life. After that something changed in him. He couldn't have said right off what it was. But something had changed. And he returned to that church and talked to the pastor. Pretty soon he was attending the regular service, bringing his family and getting to know the other people there.
They had Bible Study so he joined that. He wanted to know more about this thing that was turning his life around and making him feel good about himself and his life once again. He was changing and he wanted to know how his old life had been the worship of idols and this new life he was embracing was really about truth. He wanted to love more as silly as he knew that would sound to his old friends.
His wife and daughter liked the change a whole lot. His young son enjoyed playing basketball with some of the other guys he met at the church. They played alot better than he did and wanted to be good at the game. There wasn't any of the usual intimidation and bullying he got at his school when he scored a goal. The guys actually cheered him on. His wife and daughter had made friends too. His daughter was going camping with some of the girls she'd met while his wife had gone along with him and joined a Bible study for women.
Some years later he met up with one of his friends who was in Alcoholics Anonymous. He knew his friend hadn't drunk in nearly 20 years and asked him why he was still going. His friend asked him, "Are you still going to that church you told me about?"
"I sure am," he said.
"But you stopped that big sin of turning your back on God years ago. Aren't you cured yet?"
"Oh, I'm still sinning though. I'm working on my relationship with God and my family and friends. I found out I had a lot of character defects that stood between me and the truth. I still get deceived by false things on a regular basis. Without my church I might fall back to thinking the way I used to. I don't want to lose the life I have today. I love my connection to God. Why are you still going to Alcoholics Anonymous."
"About the same reason. Alcohol stood between me and a relationship with God, my family and friends. Once I gave up drinking I could work on doing the same things as you're doing. Alcoholics just have to put down their drink before they can get to work on pride. I guess you church people can start right off on pride." the alcoholic friend said.
"I guess we've all got soul sickness." replied the church going sinner." That's what a fellow by the name of Kierkegaard called it. Said that "life was sickness unto death". He meant the sickness of being separated from God, the Truth, our families, friends and fellows. Pride is what church people have the most of but you folks only get around to that after you deal with your gluttony for drink. Not that there isn't a lot of gluttony in our church." he laughed. "By the way some folk behave thev're still working on pride so much they haven't got round to dealing with their gluttony for that matter."
"We've got our share or that too" the alcoholic friend said.
"So why do you keep going to Alcoholics Anonymous?" the sinner asked.
"To help the still suffering alcoholic. It's mostly service. But a little bit is pride. Alcoholic's think of themselves as special. We're an elite exclusive club that paid alot of dues for membership. It takes a while before we're ready to mix with commoners such as church folk."
"Commoner's?" the sinner laughed.
"Yes, we think of the church as Sinner's Anonymous."
"Well, then you'd fit right into our next Bible study because you really do have enough pride to really need a church."
The two men laughed and shook hands in parting, after agreeing to join each other for dinner in their separate but alike clubs. At Christmas they both were sharing alot of open house fellowship.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

No comments: