John Corson's Blog

WRITING & RANTING
for September 26, 2021

IT'S BACK TO THE MUNDANE MONOTONY

The bottom nearly fell out today! The attendance left a lot to be desired. I really gets to me when we have visitors and there are only a few of our regulars there to greet them. Now we actually had one less than last week and six more than the week before, but as far as picking back up from the Summer's high attendances of August, I can't see to see it.

The offerings? Well, let's just say they were the third worst of the year. I don't give specifics here in my blogs because the numbers and count don't give a good reference point as to what is average and what is awful. Suffice it to say, today featured a well prepared message, and some good singing and I felt like there was no one there to hear and benefit from it. I know people were there, but in a church where having one person a month tell you they liked or appreciated the sermon is rare, you have to judge your effectiveness and their appreciation by their attendance, or lack thereof.

The morning started out with me reading of the hospitalization of our media team leader's father. His mother just got out of the hospital following surgery she needed from a fall. She comes home from rehab yesterday morning and her husband goes in to the E.R. less than an hour later. So Victor needed to be with the family. Dave, who is the second member of the media team and Victor's main backup came in late. His wife is the main pianist who is recovering from carpel tunnel surgery and couldn't play today. I thought they were going to be going to her son-in-law's church to hear him preach since we had Shirley lined up to play the piano for her. But they came in late and seeing Victor wasn't there, he took over from me as I punched through the slides while the church was singing and Janice leading, I came on stage to lead in prayer and used the tablet to change the slides which is what I do during my sermons and when I have to fill in for both Victor and Dave. If I have to be on the stage, no one is in the media room and I do it remotely.

Yeah, pat me on the back and say "Good boy!" If anything, I have spoiled my church into thinking that if no one else can do it, will do it, or isn't there to do it, good ole Pastor John will do it. It kind of reminds me of that story about four people named Everybody, Somebody, Anybody and Nobody. There was an important job to be done and Everybody was sure that Somebody would do it. Anybody could have done it, but Nobody did it. Somebody got angry about that, because it was Everybody’s job. Everybody thought Anybody could do it, but Nobody realized that Everybody wouldn’t do it. It ended up that Everybody blamed Somebody when Nobody did what Anybody could have.

The story may be confusing but the message is clear: no one took responsibility so nothing got accomplished. That seems to be the story around Windsor Baptist. It wasn't always that way but since the church has gotten older, the younger couples and kids have all been gobbled up by the fast paced contemporary church down the road and many of our working folks have either moved or died, we are left with those who say: "I did my work here and have put in 30, 40 or 50 years and more. Let someone else do it. Can't we find anyone else?"

Now I don't have anyone in the church, that I know of, who would come out and say: "Well, that is what we pay the pastor for. Let him do it." But it turns out that way quite a bit. Not that I mind doing it, but I know my limitations and I also know that if I did it all, that certainly would spoil them in such a way that if something were to happen to me, they would either look for a replacement who can and will do it all, or they will be so depressed that they would give up and close the doors.

That is a serious state in which to be. It depresses me to think about it. I just want to plug along without killing myself doing things that require two, three or more people to do at once.

I told one of the ladies at church today as she was making jest saying that she needed to get something done with her house before I perform her funeral (she is 93 years old and as active as a 55 year old). I told her that she was going to outlive me. She said, she didn't think so and didn't want me to retire before she passed away. Then she asked me how long I think I will be around. I didn't hesitate with my answer. I said: "Well, my main preaching professor stayed 21 years and a month at his most successful ministry and he once told his class of future preachers that he would love to look down from heaven and see that all of his preacher boys had a least a 21 year ministry somewhere. It looks like that if this were a requirement to get into heaven, I have 10 years and eleven months to go." She thought for a few seconds and said, "That would make me 104, so I will hang on until then and you can let my funeral be your last hurrah."

The point here is that that means I have until September 1, 2032 to hang on and keep on with the hope that I don't burn out wearing all the hats and burning the candle at both ends. I do pray almost every day that God will send me some helpers )workers in the vineyard, as Jesus once called them). Hey! Is there anyone reading these words who lives within twenty minutes of Windsor, Virginia who can play an instrument, works with electronics (video, audio, computers) teaches and would like to teach Sunday School, good with and have a heart for young people, children, infants, etc.? We have openings! In fact, there are approximately fifteen things that are going undone, positions unfilled and ministries being overlooked due to the lack of people with talents, gifts, abilities, hearts and/or experience in one or more of those areas. The Elevate Church down the road has so many youth and children's workers that they are on a rotation basis and no one has to work more than twice a month. They have four drummers for Goodness sakes, can't they share at least one???!!!

Alright, well, there is the church news for this week. More huffing and puffing, grumbling and complaining as being added to today's extra load on me was the office computer fiasco and all my attention diverted to that. And then there was the QuickBooks situation and trying to rely on an all but non-existence customer service department. Just click back to the Rants from September 7, September 21 and September 23 for a rundown of my headaches as the "jack-of-all-trades" pastor.

Folks, I am tired. It's the kind of tired you get when you don't have enough energy to even figure out how to keep going. I honestly don't see how I am going to make it to September 1, 2032. I did not promise Olin Hay (my preaching professor) that I would push myself to have a 21 year ministry. I just made it a goal for which to strive. I will tell you this: If I win the lottery, I will have 10 percent of the winnings to mission work, 10 percent to churches in the area in need which includes Windsor Baptist, and 10 percent for cancer research. But I will announce my retirement and stay as long as it takes to get a young man who will not become discouraged at all the bald heads and blue hairs sitting out in the sanctuary and see it as a challenge to find some youth and young adults - even if it means STEALING them from Elevate Church! It may take a year and I won't be in any hurry in looking for my replacement (and mind you, they would really want me to do that as they won't know how to do it and who to call from the state Baptist Convention to help them). But my idea of being a pastor is more Biblical and a whole lot less secular business-like.

It's a beautiful afternoon, so I am going outside to change my disposition and get a little more happy. Thank goodness I can find God's blessing in nature these days with the cooperative weather; especially following a day where I couldn't quite read the crowd (or lack thereof) to see if God was present. I mean, I know He was present. I just couldn't see Him through all the empty spaces and the running around doing four things at a time that I experienced today.

Until tomorrow ...

Blog for September 25 Blog for September 27

Blogging

Blogs are about the blogger. It's as if he or she merely toots their own horns about the things they do, say and love.

My life is boring. I read, I watch Glenn Beck and Mark Levin. I listen to Andrew Wilkow. I engage in some conversation with those who are willing to listen (they being masochistic and enjoy killing themselves with my banter).

I plan on just laying out the things that bother me and the things I love. Nothing in-between. I hope you find whatever I put here amusing.