While visiting our daughter recently Jo bought a magazine that had a really cool story in it.
“My 3-year-old son, Garrett, is like a tape recorder: if he hears you say something, you can bet you’ll hear it again at the most embarrassing moment-like the evening my husband took Garrett to visit his parents and got stuck in horrible traffic. When they arrived, our son greeted his nana with four new colorful phrases.
After that night, we discussed with Garrett which words are not nice to say-and he took it to heart. That Sunday, he came with us to the morning church service to hear his cousin sing in the choir. It was going well until Garrett heard the reverend say the word ‘hell.’ All of a sudden, my son’s face got red and he indignantly pointed and yelled, ‘He said a bad word, Mama!’ The reverend paused as a wave of giggles passed through the congregation. But that wasn’t all my son had to say. He looked at me and whispered loudly, ‘Did you learn it from his daddy?’ ” –Laura Corcoran from First for women
Go ahead. I give you permission to laugh (and to pass it on). So many parents I know have gone through that type of embarrassment…children repeating what you thought they hadn’t heard.
I’m actually going to use that story to introduce the topic for this Sunday’s sermon: the subject of Heaven and Hell. When working on the idea of building a house-blueprints, foundation, framework, roof, and wiring- my original thought was to call this Heating and Air Conditioning. (You’ll get it). But my better judgment (?) decided to go with comfort level instead. Be that as it may, a belief in the afterlife has intrigued people for years. Pro. Con. Unsure. To heaven and back. To hell and back (this is way behind in tallies from the former). Seances. Mediums. The whole gamut.
HEAVEN OR HELL.
NO MIDDLE STOP OFF POINT.
NO IN-BETWEEN STATE.
NO SECOND CHANCE.
“It is appointed unto man once to die and after that the judgment.” I know it is not popular to talk about hell. It is also not popular to talk about death, even though the averages are 1 out of 1. But when talking about core beliefs, both need to be discussed. I do believe a decision needs to be made: will I follow Jesus or will I not? The decision to follow Him should not be from the fear of hell, but from being drawn by the love of God.
May I ask you to please pray for me/us for Sunday? There are some who need to make this all-important decision-rationally and without fear of the wrong reason. Thanks. What are your thoughts?