Pastor John

Pastor John

One of the most interesting and entertaining people I enjoyed getting to know from my Bible College days was Dave Stone. Dave recently retired from leading the large and influential Southeast Christian Church in Louisville, KY. However, before Dave served on staff at Southeast, he served as the Youth Minister of Shively Christian Church, which is also in Louisville.

The youth group of the Shively Christian Church were fiercely competitive with their nearby neighbor Shively Baptist Church in all things and especially softball. They were also serious about following Jesus. One week, Dave taught a Bible lesson about Jesus washing the feet of the disciples from the gospel of John, chapter 13. To make the servanthood lesson stick, he divided the kids into groups and told them to go out and find a practical way to be servants to others.

Dave said, “I want you to be Jesus in the city for the next two hours. If Jesus were here, what would He do? Figure out how He would help people.” Two hours later the kids returned to report what they had done.

One group had done two hours of yard work for an elderly man. Another group bought ice cream treats and delivered them to several widows in the church. A third group visited a church member in the hospital and gave him a card. Another group went to a nursing home and sang Christmas carols – yes, Christmas carols in the middle of August. One elderly lady remarked that it was the warmest Christmas she could remember.

But when the 5th group stood up and reported what they had done, everyone groaned. This group had actually gone to the Shively Baptist Church building and asked the preacher there if he knew someone who needed help. He sent them to the home of an elderly woman who needed yard work done. For two hours, they mowed grass, raked leaves and trimmed hedges.

When they were getting ready to leave, the woman called the group together and thanked them for their hard work. She said, “I don’t know how I could get along without you. You kids at Shively Baptist are always coming to my rescue.”

“Shively Baptist?” interrupted Pastor Stone, “I sure hope you set her straight and told her you were from Shively Christian!”

The kids replied, “Why no, Pastor Dave, we didn’t. We didn’t think it really mattered.”

Does it really matter who gets the credit if God gets the glory? Do we care more about the name over our door than we do about the NAME above all names? Are we more concerned with being known as the best church in the community than we are being the best church for the community?

Saturday is Serve Day at all Journey locations. We have 400+ red-shirted people ready to be deployed to serve our communities in the name of Jesus. We serve, not to point people to Journey, but to point people to Jesus. And if we do that, Jesus will take care of Journey.

Loving the Journey,

Pastor John