Vol.XVI No.II Pg.8
April 1979

Stuff About Things

Robert F. Turner

We have heard of a business meeting where some disgruntled members presented the elders with their reasons for wanting to change preachers. One offered, "My daughter says he preaches too long." The elders were not too impressed with that, but suggested they might ask the man to plan his lessons for a better use of time.

A second complained, "But my wife says he preaches too loud." The elders thought they might turn down the public address system and solve that weighty problem.

And the third said, "The bad thing is, the liberals just don't like him." Well now, that is going to be a bit harder to handle. Makes me think of a bumper sticker: "Get a taste of Religion — BITE A PREACHER." The man who devotes his full time to preaching the gospel deserves better than that.

There are bound to be good and bad preachers — and some who should be doing something else. But aside from the "professionals," and the con-men who think it is an easy way to make a living, preachers are a pretty decent lot. With the education, drive, and self-confidence necessary to make a reasonably successful preacher, a man can make more money and have a less demanding life doing something else. That is why those in it for the money usually drop out in eight to ten years and get into some other field.

It takes a good man Charlie Brown, to go right on doing research, preparing the sort of lessons you and your elders feel are most needed, and presenting them to an audience of note passing teen-agers, sleeping parents, ceiling-gazing gum-chewers and a liberal sprinkling of crying babies and their struggling mothers. More than once I have had the strong temptation to close the book and shout, "O.K., you win, you can have it!!"

And then I see the sober, thoughtful look on this teen-ager; the nod of approval on that parent; and a young mother comes to me after service with an apology for her child, and a request for my outline so she can study it when the child sleeps. If there are problems that fret and discourage us, there are also people who need the Lord, and are appreciative of your efforts to bring the two of them together. When you speak of good and bad preachers — remember the good and bad people they work with, and the fact that, despite rumors to the contrary, preachers are people.

Mothers and Dads, encourage your boys to accept the challenge of the greatest "service" job on earth.