Monday, October 23, 2006

Mr. Conservative

Born on January 1, 1909, Barry Goldwater was destined to change politics in the United States forever. He served five terms as a US Senator from the state of Arizona and ran for President in 1964 against Lyndon Johnson but received only 38% of the vote and won only 6 states. He has been hailed by his supporters and demonized by his detractors. Called "Mr. Conservative" who was Barry Goldwater.

Strongly opposed to Roosevelt's New Deal and the progressive social policies of Truman, Goldwater finally joined the Republican Party and was elected to the Senate in 1952. He was a strong and loyal supporter of Senator Joe McCarthy. Goldwater found himself at odds with Republican President, Dwight Eisenhower. He called him a "dime store" version of the New Deal. Increasingly frustrated with the Republican's failure to balance the budget, control trade unions, and having abandoned their strict constructionist approach to the Constitution, in 1960 he wrote book called The Conscience of the Conservative.

He was considered too extreme on states' rights issues because he opposed the federal civil rights laws, so he was often portrayed by the media as being a racist and a biggot.

Johnson successfully painted Goldwater as a War Monger set on Nuclear War with Communist Russia. The propoganda tactic worked and frightened voters supported Johnson's re-election. Goldwater supported Nixon for the Presidency twice. Finally, on August 5, 1974 he voted for Nixon's impeachment. Nixon resigned four days later. Goldwater opposed Jimmy Carter and threw his full support behind Ronald Reagan. Reagan achieved what Goldwater had fought two decades for: getting the power and control of the Republican away from the country club Republicans and into the hands of the conservative, right wing. Reagan ran on the Goldwater philosophy: the Government is too big and it spends too much.

Today, many claim that Goldwater was the Grandfather of the Conservative movement in the United States of America.

Some Christian conservatives today are disappointed in George W. Bush and are refusing to vote this election cycle. That's stupid. In fact, Goldwater told the conservative Republican's of the Sixities that staying home didn't punish the Republicans. It rewarded the Liberals and hurt themselves. We may not get everything we want from George Bush but it's a better deal then we'll ever get from the Democrats. BUT that is not the reason for this post.

Today, a conservative is not only one who is perceived as a fiscal conservative but a social conservative as well. Goldwater opposed the Christian right. Goldwater supported abortion. Goldwater supported Gay rights.

Rudy Guiliani is a fiscal conservative, a strong defense and law & order kind of man, but a flaming liberal on social issues. The Christian right says, "No Way!"

Hold it... the grandfather of the movement (founder) was an "historic" conservative who created the movement.

There theological fundamentalists today who claim to be "historic" fundamentalists but argue things like standards, versions of the Bible, and etc are the fundamental hijackers. Hmmm, sounds like the "historic" fundamentalists can be called Goldwater Fundamentalists.

Today... we not dream of calling someone a Conservative who supported abortion or gay rights. Neither should we call someone who throws out standards and the preservation of the Bible a fundamentalist.

Tuesday, August 01, 2006

The Deification of Superman

Since I was kid I have loved Superman. My first memories of the man of steel were watching the afternoon reruns of The Adventures of Superman starring George Reeves on WPIX channel 11 out of New York City. The stories were campy, the acting was not impressive, and the plots were simple: Lois and Jimmy get into trouble and Superman comes to the rescue. Superman stood for truth, justice, and the American way. As a kid it always bugged me that no one could figure out that Clark Kent was Superman. I mean he's surrounded by newspaper reporters whose jobs are based on getting the scoop and finding the inside dirt on what's going on, and yet a pair of horn rim glasses fooled the lot of them. But it didn't matter. As kids we loved it. We wore mom's bath towels for capes, jumped off the back of the couch, and flew threw the air even if only in our immaginations. Then something happened when I was 11 years old .... Superman became a movie!

Christopher Reeve brought the character to the big screen. His bumbling manner as Kent was a better cover then just a pair of glasses. He made you believe that a man could fly. The special effects were beyond the old TV show and the characters were rich with humor and complexity like Margot Kidder as Lois Lane and Gene Hackman as Lex Luther. The first movie did so well along came a sequel and then a third and finally a fourth. While Reeve was excellent in the first two installments, he became "preachy" in the final two movies. Supergirl was a super flop and so the man from Krypton went away until he was resurrected for TV in Lois and Clark and then Smallville.

This summer the man of steel was set to return to the big screen with new actors and new energy for a new generation. Owning the first movie on DVD as well as 30 episodes of the original TV show I was excited and made plans to take my boys. Off to the multiplex we went with anticipation and wonder.

The lights dimmed, the previews rolled through, and then ..... the theme music with the words Superman Returns blazing across the screen.

The basic plot was simple to follow. Superman (Brandon Routh) has been gone for 5 years and returns to find that life has changed and Lois (Kate Bosworth) is engaged and is a mother. Routh's haunting resemblance to Reeve was only surpassed by his portrayal of Clark Kent with the same bumbling manner that Christopher Reeve brought to the character. Bosworth in my opinion was a better Lois Lane than Kidder but Kevin Spacey as Lex Luther was missing the wit, charm, and ego given to him by Gene Hackman in the first two movies.

My boys loved the special effects and the action scenes but as the movie flowed I became more and more unsettled. Gone was his American identity. He was now a global hero. But what became more and more disturbing was the fact he was no longer being portrayed as an alien who looked human and had greater strength but now he was deity. He was god. Lois Lane, in his absence, had written an article entitled the World Doesn't Need Superman. In a scene where the two are reunited she says, "The world doesn't need a savior." To which he responds, "but everyday I hear them crying out for one."

As he flies away broken hearted that Lois has moved on he hovers over the world (actual scene) with his out stretched as if he were on a cross and he hears millions of people calling out to him (praying) for help. When Lois and her son find themselves in danger, Superman comes to the rescue but not before we witness an amazing fete of strength from the five year old boy as he throws a grand piano across a room to kill a man who was going to hurt his mother.

Lex and Superman face off and Luther gains the upper hand by stabbing him with kryptonite. Our hero ends up in the hospital. When a nurse goes in on the third day to treat him ... he's gone leaving nothing but an empty bed and a sheet in hs place. We then see him in the home of Lois and her fiance kneeling at the bed of our little super one. Yes. Superman has a son. Lois, espoused to another gives birth to Superman's heir. As the caped hero kneels he whispers into the sleep ears of his off spring, "The father is now the son and the son will become the father."

....if you have seen me you have seen the Father...

I left the theater sickened and saddened. There was nothing hidden about what the Director was infering. Superman is no longer just one who is faster than a speeding bullet, more powerful than a locomotive, or able to leap tall buildings in a single bound ... he's now god.

As the world falls further from the truth and becomes more and more a post Christian society it is now time more than ever to be shinning lights of the true gospel.

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

It's All Jack Hyles' Fault

In the book 100 People Screwing Up America, author Bernard Goldberg wrote, " By now it is old news that Paul Begala, the CNN commentator and a primary architect (along with business partner James Carville) of Bill Clinton's rise to the presidency in 1992, is a left wing hate-monger." Goldberg continues, "The story begins in the days right after the chaotic election of 2000. On MSNBC, Mike Barnicle, the commentator, held up a map of the United States, noting the Red States (for Bush) in the middle of the country and the Blue States (for Gore) on the coasts." The comparison was made of a cultural divide in America ... Wal-Mart vs Martha Stewart or family values vs a sense of entitlement.

One week later in a column written by Paul Begala he stated, "Yes, Barnicle was right when he notes that tens of millions of good people in Middle America voted Republican. But if you look closely at the map you see a more complex picture. You see the state where James Byrd was lynch-dragged behind a pick up truck until his body came apart - it's red. You see the state where Matthew Shepard was crucified on a split rail fence for the crime of being gay - it's red. You see the state where right wing extremists blew up the federal office building and murdered scores of federal employees - it's red. The state where an Army private was thought to be gay was bludgeoned to death with a baseball bat, and the state where neo-Nazi skinheads murdered two African-Americans because of their skin color, and the state where Bob Jones University spews its anti-Catholic bigotry: they're all red too."

Linking Republicans who did nothing wrong (except for voting for George Bush) to bombers and racists and homophobes was indeed a smear in a hate filled column. Begala didn't see it that way. After several of his media contemporaries, even liberal ones, took him to task for his original article he wrote a follow up piece. Under the headline "I'd Like To Report A Mugging" Begala stated that he had been mugged by other reporters and commentators for daring to disagree with his conclusions.

In the style of Begala and with less grace than a James Carville rant on Meet the Press, Jeri Massi has made it her life's mission to associate all independent, fundamental Baptist preachers as women abusing, child molesting, sheep beating, dictatorial psychos with poor doctrine and militant views. The congregations are, in her estimation, made up of either scared victims who are afraid to leave or stupidly blind loyalists who will drink poison if the preacher says so.

While there have been and are and will be abuses within IFB circles and people who have suffered true abuse which is not what Christ had in mind when He established His church, it is her broad brush approach to which I take issue. An internet search will reveal that abuses cross denominational lines. Yet, Jeri has focused all of her attention on one group and then narrowed it down to those within that group who followed the ministry of the late Dr Jack Hyles.

One of the men greatly influenced by Dr Hyles was Jerry Falwell who not only pioneered fundamentalists having a TV media ministry but was also the founder of Liberty University. Seeing the college ministry as a viable tool to reach and influence American fundamentalist churches, Hyles founded Hyles-Anderson College in Crown Point, Indiana. http//

Dr Hyles ministry was widely received during the late 60's and 70's and early 80's as being an innovator in church growth methods, an emphasis on personal soul-winning, and an ardent supporter of the Bus Ministry. Each year he hosted a national conference for pastors and lay leaders called Pastors' School. Thousands of delegates from across the nation would gather for a week of practical instruction on church organization methods by day and hell fire & brimstone pulpit pounding revival preaching by night. In the mid 80's Dr Hyles son, who was pastoring in Texas, was discovered to be involved in immorality on a level that rocked every fundamental church to its core. Hyles himself became embroiled in a scandal of alleged adultery by a former deacon who took his tabloid story to an evangelist and Christian newspaper editor with an axe to grind. Support and confidence eroded in Dr Hyles' ministry.

Several pastors, some with personal agendas in mind, came to Dr Hyles' defense thus isolating him from mainstream fundamentalism. Everyone understands that when you feel threatened, persecuted, or singled out that you're happy to get support and friendship from almost anyone willing to offer it when you're down. This Dr Hyles did and while it protected him in the short term it actually hurt him over the long term.

When a Detroit TV station decided to do a hit piece on a Michigan church being acused of harboring child molesting volunteer workers, immediately they wanted to make a connection between the pastor's training at Hyles-Anderson College and the seemingly evil behavior of the alleged molesters (who were found innocent by the way). Preying From The Pulpit aired over several nights claiming that the Hyles brand of Christianity fostered abuse. With a musical background from a horror movie, Hyles sermon sound bites never put into a context for the viewer, and tearful testimonials one would walk away with the impression that Jack Hyles taught pastors to beat people, abuse women, and molest children.

Jeri Massi, a Bob Jones University graduate and published fictional author, has picked up the mantle that all the evils in the world are somehow Jack Hyles' fault. She maintains a blog as well as a presence of the Fighting Fundamentalist Forum. Her self proclaimed mission is to document the abuses of IFB pastors who had a connection to the teachings of Jack Hyles. It is obvious she is not a victim's advocate. If she were truly interested in helping hurting victims then she would be concerned about all victims of abuse and not just those of the IFB. What about the abuses of those suffered from Catholic priests? No mention by Jeri. What about the sex abuses of children by the hands of those within the public school profession (which out number the Catholic priest scandal)? Again, no mention. Just as there is no mention of the victims within her own denomination of Presbyterian.

That brings us back to Hyles. Out of a ministry that spanned 4 decades and saw tens of thousands of people who were influenced by him either directly as a pastor or indirectly through his conference speaking circuit and audio tapes and books he released or the nearly 1,000 graduates of the college that bears his name what is the number of cases of abuse that Jeri Massi must wage a never ending crusade on: 12 maybe as many as 20 if she can somehow connect the terrorists of 9-11 to maybe having once driven through Indiana - the Hyles state.

While I agree that one case of abuse is too many ... she wages war on Hyles who may have been directly or indirectly connected to 12 men who committed evil crimes against women and children. Compare to that to the nearly 28,000 cases against the Roman Catholic Church or the 290,000 students subjected to sexual abuse by public school employees between 1991 and 2000. That's nearly 32,000 cases a year or one in every ten students as reported to the US Department of Education by Charol Shakeshaft, statistics professor, in a survery done by the American Association of University Women Educational Foundation.

As Begala tried to associate ALL midwestern Republicans in the Red States as guilty of murder, hate, and bigotry .... Jeri Massi attempts to associate all IFB Pastors as whoremongers, rapists, and molesters because of the actions of 12. She associates all IFB Pastors who are connected to Jack Hyles as beaters, cheaters, and defeaters. That would be like claiming "New York - the state where a Jewish rabbinical student was stabbed to death by a black man who was part of the frenzied anit-Semitic black mob - Blue State (for Gore). California - where rioters hauled an innocent, helpless man out of his truck and beat him senseless with a brick - Blue State (for Gore). The states with the most people of welfare - Blue (Gore)."

What a sad waste of her talents as a fictional writer. Oh, wait... she is still writing fiction. Aaah, I can breathe a sigh of relief.

Saturday, June 17, 2006

First Response

It's been nearly a month since we were all shocked regarding the news about Bob Gray of Jacksonville, Florida. I wrote several letters to people and organizations which supported and promoted Dr Gray's ministry.

I have received my first reponse....

Monday, June 12, 2006

Dear Bro. Braemer,

Thank you for your letter concerning Dr. Gray. I, too, am sickened by what has happened. While I have never spent much time with him, I have known him for years and, of course, heard him preach several times. This is all very hard to imagine.

I have told my staff and anyone else that has brought up this subject that it is a tragedy. If it is true it is tragic what happened to those young girls. If it is not true it is a tragedy because Dr. Gray's ministry is ruined. Of course if he is guilty he should be treated the same as any child molester.

We did take Dr. Gray's picture off of our website on the first day that this was all heard. I am sure that we will address this in some form once the story unfolds and we know more. You are right; fundamentalists cannot just stick their heads in the sand and pretend it didn't happen. While we did take Dr. Gray's picture off because of this incident, it is not the first time we changed around list. Ironically, we just recently added his name. I noticed that we had never listed him and my website manager that we should add him (bad timing).

I am praying for Bro. Messer and Trinity. I know they must be going through much turmoil.

Dr. Neal Weaver
President ... Louisiana Baptist University

I appreciate Dr. Weaver's candid response.

Saturday, June 03, 2006

Artificially Flavored

When my wife and I first got married we did many things together like shop for groceries. On one of our first trips to the supermarket my assignment was to go to the dairy aisle and get one gallon of milk, one dozen eggs, and pack of American cheese. When I returned to the cart with my find... she stopped me and inspected my items. The milk and eggs went into the basket but not the cheese. She pointed to the label that read "cheese food" and said, "this is artificial cheese." I returned to the cheese bin and found the pack with the official dairy logo on it because artificial just won't do.

Barry Bonds has tied Babe Ruth for the most home runs hit ... maybe. For over a decade he has spurned the media and been antagonistic toward his own team mates. Under pressure he finally admitted to using "some" form of steroids that he didn't know was steriods at the time ... maybe.

This season when he took the field for the first time he received boos and someone threw a syringe onto the field at him. In stadiums across the country he was greeted with banners that read things like "Babe Ruth did it on beer and hotdogs, Hank Aaron did it with class, Bonds did it on drugs." Sad. Barry has entered into full damage control mode by being friendly to the media, taking extra time for the fans, and tearing up on ESPN in his own weekly PR show called Bonds On Bonds. Why, if I didn't know better I would think he was a preacher in trouble. Simply replace the inflated stats of home runs for inflated attendance and salvation decisions and you're on your way. Replace the steroids scandal with a sexual affair or worse and you've reached second base. Then make nice - nice with all the other preachers and camps you've ripped on, do nice things in the community that get you free, positive press, and maybe add a Swaggart style confession and you just crossed home plate.

Here's part of the truth in the Bonds story no one likes to admit. We (the fans) love watching the home run. We get caught up in the chase of a record. MLB itself looked the other way for over a decade as players like Sammy Sosa went from looking Tattoo on Fantasy Island to the Incredible Hulk. Steroids were padding the records which led to padding the attendance which in the end led to padding cash drawer. In short, Bonds - Sosa - McGwire made MLB and their teams money. Now, as we look back at the lesser known and forgotten players of two or three generations ago and realize what they accomplished without enhanced equipment, loaded bats, lighter balls, or performance boosting drugs we yell, "Foul!" Bottom line... we created the Bonds effect. We wanted entertainment - excitement - and a hero.

As we self righteously scorn preachers who are exposed in moral failure we need to take a look at ourselves. Who was the secretary that never said anything as a steady stream of young girls went into the molesting preachers office?

My wife is a nuse and a nutritionist. The reason she doesn't like cheese food, margarin, and equal... what's articial is not good. When stats are artificially enduced we have replaced the genuine ability of the athlete and the true Holy Spirit power of the preacher with a cheap immitation and in the end that's not good.

Tuesday, May 30, 2006

A Call for Clarification on Bob Gray

Missionary to Germany, Mark Bachman, called me today to offer some clarification regarding the missionary status of Dr. Bob Gray. Mark was concerned over one aspect of the comments regarding the Bob Gray incident. He wants people to understand that Bob Gray was not sent to Germany by Tom Messer or Trinity Baptist Church.

Apparently Dr Gray served as a post war correspondant in Germany during the War Trials. He and his wife visited Germany every year since then. Their vacation was an annual missions trip to Germany. As early as the mid 1980's Dr Gray had made it known that his desire was to leave the pastorate and go to Germany as a missionary. According to Mark, several other pastors encouraged Dr Gray to stay in Jacksonville. Mark and his wife arrived in Germany in 1989 and were told then that Bob Gray would be coming to serve with them. He finally arrived in 1992.

Mark did not simply defend Dr Gray. In fact he made the comment that perhaps this was an exit strategy in the back of Bob Gray's mind for some time. He (Bachman) wanted to make it clear that this was not a Tom Messer plan to get Gray out of the country. Dr Gray had made numerous trips and visits to Germany over a 50 year time period. None of us know if all or part or any of these allegations are true but we all agree they must be taken seriously and prayerfully for are those involved. We continue to pray for Dr and Mrs Gray as well as their family, Tom Messer and the families of Trinity Baptist Church, and the families of the alleged victims as well as all the law enforcement officials and attorneys involved.

I appreciate Brother Bachman calling to offer some clarification. Again, this is not second hand information or hear say. This comes directly from a man who worked along side Dr Gray in Germany. Mark told me he read my article here and was not concerned with the content of my writing but rather he was concerned with some of the response comments made by others implying that Trinity & Messer hatched this plot at the last minute in '92 to get rid of Gray. Going to Germany was completely Dr Gray's idea. What all the reasons were behind his decision is known only in Gray's heart and God's mind.

Sunday, May 28, 2006

Play Ball or .... Fundamental Politics

I pastor just 20 minutes from the quaint little town of classic Americana known as Cooperstown, New York which is the home of the National Baseball Hall of Fame. It's a small town in every sense of the word. Sitting on the banks of Otsego Lake, rows of storefront baseball memorabilia shops line Main Street and the side streets. Doubleday Field, home of the annual Hall of Fame game, is across the street from the firehouse. My two sons and I like to go to Cooperstown for a boys day out.

Once a year I take my family to see God's favorite baseball team... the New York Mets. Driving to see the Mets from my house is about three hours but once you cross the Tri-Borough bridge from the Bronx into Queens and you pass LaQuardia International Airport on the Grand Central Parkway, the sight of the "other" holy land is just on the horizon... Shea Stadium. Inside the first smell to greet you are the Nathan's hot dogs sizzling on the grills. Now, my story is about Cooperstown, but I needed to set the stage.

Hot Dogs go with baseball like Babe Ruth, home runs, and yelling at the umpire. Cooperstown as a municipality is run by the "hysterical" society. Residents are strictly regulated on the up keep of their homes to maintain that vintage turn of the 20th century look and feel. McDonald's, fastfood, and chain motels are located 8 miles out of town. In the village you can stay at a bed & breakfast or a mom & pop motel or one of the grand old hotels that will cost you a week's salary to stand in the lobby. You can shop until drop and find anything and everything related to baseball for trading cards to actual MLB uniforms. You can eat at a sidewalk cafe' or sit down and dine on seafood BUT you can't buy a hot dog in Cooperstown. Why? Good question...

Recently, I made my 9,000th visit to the home of all things baseball with Jon Jenkins, pastor of the Grace Baptist Church in Gaylord, Michigan. After a non hot dog lunch of over priced for the tourists hoagies, we walked to the Hall of Fame. Greeting you as you enter are two life size statues. One is the Babe and the other is Ted Williams. Both are carved from a single log. They are so life like you think they can talk. After paying our admission fee we headed to the Grandstand Theatre for a multi-media baseball presentation. From there it was on to the exhibits.

As we walked through the complete evolution of baseball from the late 1800's bar clubs to the sleak, well financed game of today we had a conversation about the change of baseball and how the independent fundamental Baptist movement is that same place.

Baseball has changed since its birth. The gloves are better as is all of the equipment used to play the game from catchers gear to the lighter uniforms. Nike, Converse, and Addias have turned old stiff leather cleats into fast, flexible, and comfortable athletic shoes. Games are played at night and the technology of television takes these games around the world. Despite these changes, the basic concept of baseball is still the same. Each team fields 9 players. The batter attempts to hit the ball safely and round the three bases and reach home without being tagged out to score a run. The defense try to catch the ball in the air or tag the runner out to stop him from scoring. The pitcher fires at the batter and the umpire makes both teams mad.

Now, there are some die hards like my father who argue, "East coast teams should not have to travel to the West coast and play night games there. 7Pm is 10PM at home and who wants to play at 10PM?" Others argue that the DH for the American league is not real baseball and still more say that "Wild Card" teams in the playoffs damage the sport's integrity. Me, I hate inter-league play. Nothing worse then eccumenical baseball.

Again, with all the changes the game itself is still basically the same. Today, many in fundamentalism are opposed to change ... ANY change. Now, I agree that our doctrine does not and should not change. But when we start arguing that churches which use movie screens to project the words to their songs instead of using hymnals is somehow the first step to apostasy, we need to take a time out. Okay, so charismatics used them first. So what? Movie screens and power point are not doctrinal issues. Hymnals are not sacred, divinely inspired books. It's funny but Amazing Grace can be projected onto a screen just like a new chorus.

These men who argue, "We're on the old path! We ain't changing nothing!" Oh, really??? So are they now Amish? Do they reject cars, cell phones, computers, and ESPN? No, they only object to something they consider NON Baptist like movie screens or keyboards instead of organs or choruses instead of hymns because Pentecostals came up with that stuff. Did you know that the first church service to use PA equipment was an eccumenical gathering on Armistice Day on November, 1921. Gathered to protest war and pray for peace, Lutherans along with Anglicans and other protestants used a PA system designed by AT&T with microphones, amps, and speakers made by Bell labs.

Hey Baptist Preacher Brethren... next time you stand in your pulpit and yell into your PA while making a tape of your preaching remember that the Presbies, Lutherans, and "liberals" used it FIRST!

Just like no ball player today would want to wear a 100% wool uniform on a humid July afternoon or take a buggy ride to the ball park or stand in the batter's box without a helmet... we need a reality check within fundamentalism. So when Dennis Corle or Keith Gomez write articles in their papers about how they won't change and movie screens are wrong then I must ask... are they now scribes? I mean, do they hand copy every issue of their papers or do they write them out on a computer and then have them mass produced on a webset printer? Why, Gomez is more liberal than Corle because Keith's paper is full color while Corle's is Baptist black and white.

Now, let me say that I know both of these men. I believe them to be sincere men who love the Lord and don't want to leaven in the loaf. I agree. But let's keep out the leaven of heresy. Whether they write their articles on a lap top or a Royal typewriter... we all use some form of technology. Let's keep the fundamentals of our faith, the fundamental focus. Some of the equipment may have changed and some of the rules (preferenced standards) may have been adjusted but the core beliefs are the same.

It was fun to look back at the old uniforms with the thick gloves that couldn't close but it's not practical for today. Yes, it's fun, as fundamentalists, to think of ourselves as old fashioned and unchanging but as we sit in our air conditioned auditoriums or listen to our own messages on CD the truth is we have changed. Change is part of life ... it's part of growing. Me, I hope I am changing. I hope I have changed to be more like Christ today then yesterday. If we never change then we'd all still be infants sitting in a play pen wearing diapers and sucking our thumbs.

Come to think of it now... just kidding. Just like historians have taught us and places like the Hall of Fame preserve for us, let's respect the past but also embrace the future. Are we going to like all the changes? No. I still hate interleague play, but I love to watch baseball on TV. Do I like all the changes in our churches? No. I personally don't like youth pastors who look like MTV video hosts, so I won't have that change in the church that I pastor. We moved our Sunday School and Bus Ministry from Sunday morning to Wednesday night. For us, it works. If you don't like that kind of change then don't do it. Bottom line... we're still anchored on the fundamentals of the faith, we have a healthy respect for our heritage and heroes, but we balance the changes of the future with the Word and how God directs us an individual ministry.

Try it... it works.