Corsicana Daily Sun, Corsicana, Texas

Opinion

September 20, 2013

Guest Commentary: Take ‘time out’ for God

Dear Educators, Coaches, Leaders of Organizations that work with children and youth:

Thank you! Thank you for the fine work you do (much of it on a volunteer basis) to help the young people in our city and county learn more about life and its wide variety of options. Thank you when you live up to the level of being an example for them to model and from which to learn. Thank you for the work you do (often unnoticed) to help kids have a better life than they otherwise would have. You are making a difference, and I thank you!

I also want to make a request: Please try your best to honor the necessary and time-honored tradition of spiritual training for young people. Through the years, Sunday mornings and Wednesday nights have been reserved for church activities, Bible studies, worship services, and valuable cohesion-building opportunities for the family unit.  

Over the past few decades, however, coaches, school personnel, and other organizations have begun to use Sunday mornings and Wednesday evenings for their own purposes. We all realize that there are only so many hours in a week, and the various opportunities one can be involved in are many, but can I ask you to please consider how important it is to allow a family the opportunity to worship (if they desire) on Sunday morning and for some additional training for an hour or hour-and-a-half on Wednesday nights?  

If you schedule a meeting, practice, game, or other activity on Sunday mornings or Wednesday evenings, each family is faced with a decision:  either go to church or go to the event. If it’s a practice, then the family also knows that if they miss the practice, their son/daughter might be penalized and not allowed to play in the game on one of the following nights. They don’t want their kids to appear as non-supportive of the team or event, but they also know the importance of spiritual training.  

You may or may not have a religious belief, but the vast majority of people in our town and city do have religious beliefs. The overwhelming majority also meet on Sunday mornings and Wednesday nights. Therefore, out of respect for other people’s beliefs, why not let them be totally free on Sunday mornings and Wednesday nights?  

It’s important to learn athletic skills, and I know that there are a lot of coaches who model sportsmanship and demonstrate high ideals in the way they conduct themselves, but nothing can replace the opportunity for a family to study the Bible and worship together on Sunday mornings. Wednesday nights are also a time of training children and youth to be good, moral, upstanding people who honor God with their lives. Jesus said it is possible to gain the whole world (athletic, hobbies, education, career, etc.) and still lose his/her soul. The soul is eternal, while the events we are practicing and training for are not.  

Please understand also: not every church has an early service to which members and guests can attend. The vast majority of worship services are from 11 a.m. to noon. Why not let the family worship together? Let them eat a Sunday meal together. Give them the full opportunity for the development of their souls on Sunday mornings and Wednesday nights.  

I can anticipate some rebuttal: “But, Pastor Rick, Christian people can decide for themselves. They can either attend or not attend.”  

Yes, that’s true, and if more Christians decided not to attend other events on Sunday mornings and Wednesday nights, it might have an impact. But Christian people are often persuaded by their kids (who have less experience, but control of the “heart strings”) and other adults to forego the spiritual development for the sake of a game or event. Quite often, later in life, they realize they missed a small window of opportunity to really help their kids learn about God.

When I pastored in another town, I had a young man who demonstrated incredible knowledge and thirst for the things of God. He was always asking me about some aspect of our faith; always reading and learning and growing his soul. Sadly, however, around the age of 11 or 12, he got pulled away by the other (secular) interests that almost any town has available. His parents said, “We’ll pray when we are at the game. We will make sure to teach our kids lessons about God at the events.” I know they had good intentions, but I saw this young man slowly, but steadily, slip away from his hunger and thirst for matters of faith. The last I saw of him, he was getting ready for college and completely lost interest in matters regarding his soul.  

Please understand that decisions you make about games, practices, meetings, and events have an eternal impact. I’m not demanding anything or trying to be legalistic about this. I appreciate the dedicated volunteers in our whole area. I support you in trying to make a difference.

I am requesting, however, you respect the eternal needs of the souls of those with whom you work.  

Respectfully,

“Pastor Rick” Lamb

Northside Baptist Church

Corsicana

 

1
Text Only
Opinion
  • Dr Don Newbury 2014.jpg It’s about time

    Some aspect of time steals quietly into our psyche in all conscious moments, and our use or abuse of it is central to much poetry, lyrics, scripts, conversations — you name it.

    April 16, 2014 1 Photo

  • Dick Platt 2014.jpg The Wonderlic Test

    Did you hear the one about Texas A&M’s “Johnny Football” Manziel testing better than all the other quarterbacks in this year’s NFL Scouting Combine? No, this is not the start of an Aggie joke.

    April 14, 2014 1 Photo

  • deannakirk.jpg Work Out? Bite your tongue!

    I've shared this before, but it bears repeating. I'm a lot like my late, dear Daddy … whose idea of “working out” was a good, brisk sit.
    Amen, Daddy. Me too.

    April 11, 2014 1 Photo

  • Letters to the Editor for Saturday, April 12, 2014

    Thanks for service
    To the Editor: The Blooming Grove Elementary School would like to express appreciation to several individuals and businesses that for three years have provided a “free” vision exam and eyeglasses for many of our students.

    April 11, 2014

  • Dr Don Newbury 2014.jpg Uncle Mort: For the Birds

    Personal experiences racked up across three-quarters of a century — including yips and yaps at lecterns spanning five decades — offer positive proof that many times, utter silence is preferable to spoken words.

    April 9, 2014 1 Photo

  • Dick Platt 2014.jpg One-liners

    For many years, in a previous life, I had somewhat of a reputation as a master-of-ceremonies and I stayed relatively busy at that avocation. I never met a microphone I didn’t like

    April 7, 2014 1 Photo

  • Deanna Kirk mug Gotta love a small town

    There's so many things to love about living in a small town. Why just last week I got to hang out with my ex-husband, his folks, his wife and baby at the Youth Expo. Then just a day later, I got to see my other ex-husband and his wife at the hospital, when one of our daughters got sick and landed there.

    April 4, 2014 1 Photo

  • Jacobs, Janet.jpg Weird foods on our shelves

    The Atlantic magazine reported recently that sales of frozen pre-packaged dinners are falling and Nestle is considering selling off its Lean Cuisine food line.

    April 4, 2014 1 Photo

  • Bill Tinsley Nightfall

    Under the glaring light of day we may fool ourselves into thinking that we are center stage, that everything revolves around us. But the night gently reminds us that we are, in fact, a small speck in the galaxies of creation.

    April 3, 2014 1 Photo

  • Dr Don Newbury 2014.jpg Marjorie Main, in love and war

    Folks with dim memories of World War II recall the “coming home” of troops, and attendant triumphal celebrations that reverberated around the globe.

    April 2, 2014 1 Photo