Shift the focus
Question: Our business meetings are unpleasant. Sometimes there’s a squabble, but mostly it’s just a suspicious and doubtful atmosphere. Not much good gets done. Is this a spiritual issue or a leadership issue?
Answer: A church’s business meetings should focus on keeping the congregation informed. It should be a time of celebration about the various ministries of the church, and should communicate how the budget is or isn’t being met. The meeting should be used to inform members of upcoming activities, events, changes, or special announcements.
Making it a time of prayer, thanksgiving, and celebration for how God is blessing the ministry will eliminate the squabbles and suspicions you mentioned in your question.
Question: At an upcoming wedding at our church, the bride will be wearing white and eight months pregnant. Her family will notice if I don’t attend. Have times changed so much that I have to accept this?
Answer: If it violates your moral conscience, don’t be a hypocrite—stay home. On the other hand, be thankful that while she made a wrong choice to be sexually active prior to her marriage, she made a right choice to not have an abortion and to get married. While it’s customary for a bride to wear white as a sign of purity, it is only a custom. Real purity comes through the forgiveness of our sin by the grace of Almighty God.
If this bride has accepted Christ, it would be a wonderful act of kindness for you to support her, encourage her, help her, and love her. You can do so without condoning the fact that she got pregnant before marriage. The choice is yours.
Pat Pajak is IBSA’s associate executive director for evangelism. Send questions for Pat to Illinois Baptist@IBSA.org.