Cast your net as wide as you can

I love it when God speaks in unexpected ways.

I think I’ve told you before but in case I haven’t……

We attend three different churches. We are members of one. Let me explain.

The first is obvious. We have a cabin up north and so when we are there we attend a small, under 100 members, church. The pastor use the expository method (as opposed to the topical method) when he preaches. That means he goes methodically through the Bible, verse by verse. His sermons are well-researched. His sermons are what I would call challenging at an intellectual level.

When we are at home we attend the church where we are members most weeks. We have a new pastor and we like him. His sermons are what I would call interesting and fairly safe. They are good sermons. He does his homework. We are still adjusting to him but think he’s going to very good for our church.

But every couple of months we attend a very small church, under 30 people at the most. This pastor is very funny, while very challenging. We know that every time we go, we will come away feeling inspired.

We met this pastor when my husband was recovering in the hospital after a incident-of-unknown-and never diagnosed origin. He was the chaplain of the hospital. His prayer and visit were such that we found great comfort. We learned during the visit that he had a small church and that’s when we decided to attend now and then.

We let him and the congregation know that we would only be attending sporadically. They were fine with it and that’s how it’s been for the last couple of years.

I share this with you today just to point out that we can learn from many different spiritual leaders. We only have to sure that they are following what God’s word teaches. Just because a man or a woman stands behind a pulpit doesn’t mean they are a person of God. We are to be perceptive always.

We love what we’re doing and feel like we’ve grown in our faith. For some of you, this may sound weird. But we gave up the notion of God abiding in only a church building and only one denomination a long time ago.

We are members of a small group from our “home” church. We met some of our best friends at our little up-north church.

It’s also interesting that two of three pastors delivered almost the same sermon back to back.

If you are a member of a church, think about attending another church on occasion. It’s very enlightening.

If you are not a member of a church, visit lots of them. Listen with a discerning ear before you make a decision. When we moved back to this town after living in another town, we did just that. We even interviewed a few pastors.

One of the pastors sent us a lovely letter telling us that whether or not we decided to come to his church, he wished us well on our spiritual journey and that we would always be welcome, whether as a member or just an occasional visitor.

We didn’t end up choosing his church but we think of him with a warm place in our heart and had occasion to come in contact with him after that and maintained a good relationship with him.

Looking back, I wished we had attended his church now and then like we are doing now. He was thoughtful, well-studied, and overall a very good man. We could have learned for him.

Sometimes I think we get too caught up in a particular church. It never hurts to expose ourselves to sound doctrinal teaching from various sources.

The same goes with the treatment of depression. We might not agree with every author’s ideas (mine included) but if we read enough we’re bound to find some ideas that resonate with us.

I personally think the wider we cast our net the better we function. I also think it helps us to better understand the world from God’s perspective.

God bless and have a great day.

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