George McClellan is one of the most frustrating men I know. Well, I don’t really know him since he has been dead for more than 130 years. But I know about him.
I like reading history books because I always learn something that applies to life today. Here are some recently learned (or relearned) lessons from Civil War days and the disappointing life of General George McClellan.
-Early success isn’t always helpful. McClellan entered West Point at 15 and Continue reading
I read a biography some time back on the life of Albert Einstein. There were some surprises. First, he was pretty smart. (It takes a genius to recognize one!) Second, when it came to family life and morality, he was no Einstein. A terrible example in some ways.
But there was one area where Einstein changed his views entirely. Early in his life, he was a committed pacifist. He was so committed to his view that he urged people to refuse to serve if drafted.
He changed his views. Can you guess why? Continue reading
Posted in military, Uncategorized
Tagged 4th of July, Albert Einstein, America, armed services, Christianity, Einstein, military, pacifism, soldier, United States, United States of America
I love the patriotic worship service we have at FBC O’Fallon, IL each 4th of July weekend. It is exciting, moving and fun.
Once in a while, I read others who complain about churches having a patriotic service. They remind us of the dangers of patriotism replacing worship and zeal for the nation replacing zeal for the Lord. Duly noted.
But I do believe we can keep a proper perspective of the role of God and country. The first point of my sermon on Sunday was “We have earthly responsibilities but a greater allegiance.” (I preached from the story of Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego from Daniel 3 and the greater allegiance referred to the Lord, not D.C. My wife says it was the greatest sermon preached in the history of Christendom- but Continue reading
Posted in Christianity, military, Uncategorized, worship
Tagged Baptist, Christianity, church, faith, God, Jesus, local church, military, patriotic service, patriotism, preaching, relationship with god, Religion and Spirituality, sermons, worship
I love that the church where I am pastor (FBC O’Fallon, IL) is near Scott Air Force base. We have hundreds of military folks in our church and it is a great blessing. It will be 19 years this summer since I came and I’ve learned some things about the military folks. (I am a slow learner.) Here are some things I’ve learned about ministry with the military community.
1. Military types move. A lot. To lots of places. It isn’t unusual for me to meet a new family moving in from Guam while saying goodbye to another moving to Germany. Some move in saying “I’m only here for three years so I’m jumping into the church with both feet.” They look immediately for opportunities to serve and connect. I love that! Others say, “I’m only here for three years so I’m not going to get involved.” The smart aleck in me responds with, “How long will you be here if you do get involved?”
Military families learn how to deal with new circumstances and environments. The children of military parents learn to make friends and adjust to new things. Their moves make them interesting to us civilians. They have seen places we haven’t and enjoyed experiences foreign to us. We are impressed with the variety of their experiences.
They are so interesting. But, they leave us. And, if we aren’t careful, we guard our hearts against the pain of their departures. I remind our church often that we must be willing to love each other- military and civilian- even though our hearts are broken when we part. Love is worth the pain.
2. Military types deploy. Continue reading