Greetings from the folks at the Red Roof Church in Bulverde, Texas. I’m Lee Harder, the senior pastor at St. Paul inviting you to come for a visit with us this Sunday for worship at 8:30AM or 10:45AM. If you can’t make it, why not visit our web page at redroofchurch.org and watch the broadcast of our worship celebrations there.
I want to share a concern with you that might be nothing more than creating a mountain out of a mole hill. Still, it causes me to worry about where we’re going culturally with regards to our precious independence. Let me explain.
I prepare a Bible study for three classes of people every Thursday. I prepare a sermon based on designated Scripture lessons each week at the very least. While I could go to “boxed” and “prepared” materials for these things, which many do, I choose not to because I need to constantly challenge myself to learn and grow in my knowledge. In the same manner, I actually go to church Sunday morning at about 5:00AM and preach for a couple of hours to an empty church like it was worship. It lets me fine tune my sermon for the live delivery.
At home, Karen and I actually go grocery shopping every week after I have prepared a menu with all the ingredients needed carefully listed for purchase. When it comes time to prepare the meal I either refer to a recipe in a cookbook (I have many with many excellent and challenging culinary skills required that will please any palate) or resort to my own cooking skills. (While I can’t wear the white hat of a chef, I have the skills as testified by those who have feasted on my humble offerings.) Actually, it might be better if I didn’t cook so well from my doctor’s point of view with regards to my weight.
I mention this because I am seeing more and more people unwilling or unable to do for themselves. When we shop, I see multiple racks wheeling throughout the store as employees gather the food for people who can’t (understandable) or won’t (lazy?) for themselves. I see a growing number of ads on TV for services that will mail to consumers complete meals in a box and all the instructions (with pictures) on how to prepare (including cutting) the dish with the recommended serving sizes. Result, a growing number of people who simply can’t cook. I mean, when you have to explain how to boil water to an adult, there’s a problem.
There’s more as I now see a growing trend for cars that drive themselves. I’ve got no problem about warnings from mirrors about drifting in lanes or approaching cars, but I always thought that was the job of a careful, involved driver in driving. No, I’m talking about cars that drive, that park, and that stop because the driver is doing something other than what they should be doing — DRIVING. I fear as this trend continues we will create a whole culture of people who just can’t drive. I suppose that’s okay until the computer crashes or the power goes out. What then?
And let’s not forget the growing dependence on phones that keep track of everything to the point where people can’t seem to function without them. Worse, people are forgetting how to communicate without texting. What happened to people talking to one another — you know, communicating in the flesh.
I want to share my thoughts on this because I see our culture becoming more and more dependent on some one or some thing doing what we should be doing for ourselves. I see it in our culture. I see it in giving, accepting, or what’s really scary wanting “mother” government to run our lives and the lives of our children over the desires and morals of their parents. I see the same attitude expressed in the church. As a pastor, I am only too aware of the embraced ignorance on the part of Christians concerning the Word of God in the Bible and understanding what we believe according to that Word. A growing number would rather someone else do the work that Christ commanded of all of us or have someone (as long as we agree) to tell us what to believe.
What’s going to happen if our technology crashes? What will happen within the church if Christians surrender their responsibility to know God’s Word and fall prey to false teachers who embrace the world’s agenda over Christ’s? I fear we will have become so dependent on technology and letting the other guy do it that we will be incapable of functioning on our own. Don’t get me wrong. I love technology when I can understand it, but I still want to be in control. I have music and books stored in the “cloud.” I also have “hard” copies that I can touch, hold, and use on my terms my way — just in case the clouds suddenly aren’t there. It’s possible we might be losing an essential part of our humanity by surrendering our independence and personal freedom. One good thing though, I’m getting old and won’t have to put up with this trend indefinitely. Thank you Lord!
And those are my thoughts, as antiquated as they might be. God bless until next time.
Pastor Lee R. Harder