LeaderLines – from Hillcrest Baptist Church, Austin, Texas  Contact Tom Goodman, Pastor
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"Changing Light Bulbs"
by Tom Goodman
December 8, 2005

I’m looking forward to the Dessert Theater.  It’s one of our most effective programs for introducing THEMs to our church.  Lots of your fellow members have been putting in hours and hours to get ready for this weekend, so join me in praying for them!

I’m having a great time meeting with the folks in the Adult 4 Department.  I’m meeting with one class for three weeks and then, following the holidays, I’ll meet with the other class.  This department is made up with a great group of folks.  This past Sunday I shared the following story someone e-mailed me.

      Q:  How many Calvinists does it take to change a light bulb?
      A:  None.  God has predestined which bulb will bear the light.

      Q:  How many Catholics does it take to change a light bulb?
      A:  None.  We use candles.

      Q:  How many charismatics does it take to change a light bulb?
      A:  Ten.  One to change the bulb and nine to pray against the spirit of darkness.

      Q:  How many Mormons does it take to change a light bulb?
      A:  Five.  One man to change the bulb, and four wives to tell him how to do it.

      Q:  How many Fundamentalists does it take to change a light bulb?
      A:  Only one.  Any more might make us ecumenical.

      Q:  How many liberals does it take to change a light bulb?
      A:  We choose not to make a statement either in favor of or against the need for a light bulb.  However, if in your own journey you have found that light bulbs work for you, that is fine.  We embrace a number of light bulb traditions, including incandescent, fluorescent, three-way, long-life and tinted, all of which are equally valid paths to luminescence.

      Q: How many Amish does it take to change a light bulb?
      A: What's a 'light bulb'?

      Q: How many Baptists does it take to change a light bulb?
      A: Hey, who said anything needed to be changed?

Jesus has a habit of leading his disciples out of our comfort zone.  He always has.  For example, Jesus led his disciples to outcasts like lepers (Mark 1:39-41).  He led them through social and religious boundaries when he stopped and talked to the Samaritan woman at the well (John 4:1-29).  He forced them to change their perceptions of their core religious beliefs such as what you can do on the Sabbath (Matthew 12:1-14).  When you follow Jesus and live consistently in his word and with others who follow him, you will be challenged to change.

He’s still pointing out things in my life that need changing—how about you?

As a leader at Hillcrest, some of our most important work will be helping people to stretch their faith and step out of their comfort zones as Christ leads.


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