November 15

Written by Bill Grandi on November 15th, 2023

Some people today like to complain about the church: “It’s made up of a bunch of hypocrites.” (Most definitely true). “All the church does is tell you a list of what is right and what is wrong and the wrong is always longer than the right.” (There is some truth to that). “They are insufferable and no better than me.”Β  (Given that we are all sinners that is a true statement).

So my answer to those statements? Yep. Yep. And Yep. And I’ll also say, “Welcome to my world.”

I don’t say that because I’m a pastor; I say that because they describe me. I am a hypocrite at times because I don’t always practice what I preach.Β  (Shocker!!) I don’t always live up to the standard God has set. I am sometimes judgmental (although I try really hard not to be). And sometimes I am no better than anyone else, in that sin gets its grip on me.

All this hit me last night as I sat and read. I’m rereading a novel called Dancing Priest (DP) by Glynn Young, a fellow blogger. It is one of 5 in a series about a young man named Michael Kent. I’ve read DP several times before, but it has been a few years since I last read it. I look for books to read at home which are different from my normal fare, so I have decided to read the entire series again. In DP Michael is assigned a parish (church) in San Francisco…much to his surprise. He applied for Malawi in Africa. In the ensuing conversation with his sponsor, he found out why.

Michael, the future of our church is in grave doubt. If there is a future, then you and others like you are that future. It will be better for you to be on the periphery than at the center because the center is rotting and collapsing. The future of the church is at the edges, and there you’ll find a willingness to abandon what’s dead, to meet the spiritual need, to fearlessly preach the Gospel-that is our way to survival. (p.163). A few paragraphs later he tells Michael, “You are a remarkable young man. You will do great things, Michael, not as the world defines them, but great in the way God defines them.” (p.164)

Honestly? That’s what I want. At my age (71) I know I have less years to live than I have lived. But nothing says that with the remaining years I have to sit on the sidelines and watch the world go by. I want to abandon what’s dead and to fearlessly preach the Gospel.

To my way of thinking, nothing else will do.


Note: Check out Dancing Priest and the whole series by Glynn Young on Amazon. Start with DP and I guarantee you will decide to get and read the rest.Β  And no, Glynn did not pay me to say that! πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚


14 Comments so far ↓

  1. Pam says:

    Thanks for the recommendation, Bill! For those of us, who are members of Kindle unlimited, the books are free! Can’t wait to read them!

  2. Now, you have me wanting to read the entire series again, too, Bill! Glynn’s books are so inspiring to all of us who want to serve God with commitment and enthusiasm every single day. None of us, of course, is perfect, but that doesn’t mean we can’t strive to be found worthy in God’s eyes.

    • Bill Grandi says:

      You made me chuckle Martha with your “read again.” I’m thoroughly enjoying reading Dancing Priest again. But I’m also glad you caught wind of the other thought of serving with commitment and enthusiasm.

  3. Ryan S. says:

    The quote hits the target for sure. It sure is “easy” or at least self-gratifying in many ways to be leading what everyone is doing, saying, and wanting. It is entirely different to be leading from the periphery. It is an often unnoticed, unappreciated, and often ridiculed place to be leading, yet when the mainstream starts to crumble, it is the periphery that will be in position to continue the fight forward.

    • Bill Grandi says:

      Very well said Ryan. I cannot say how much I agree with you about when the mainstream crumbles it is the periphery that will be in the right position. Fantastic thought!

  4. Glynn Young says:

    Bill – thanks for the shout-out! (I started rereading “Dancing Priest,” too!

  5. gail says:

    It’s important to make sure you are going to church that relies on the Bible as the standard of truth, and that the Pastor of the church stands on that truth. None of us are perfect, we are all sinners, but if I am going to go down with the ship, I want my Pastor standing firm on God’s word. Thanks Bill, I will man my station and go down fighting for the truth of the Lord.

    • Bill Grandi says:

      Thanks Gail and thanks for the confidence you place in my relationship with the truth of God’s Word.

  6. Ed says:

    Sounds like a good read. I just purchased a Kindle Fire too!

  7. Cheryl says:

    As we get older, it sure is easy to start feeling that our usefulness is over. But, then I think about Abraham and Moses and so many others whom God accomplished amazing things through when they were a ripe, old age, and I feel hope. I pray God continually blesses your ministry, Pastor Bill!

    • Bill Grandi says:

      You are so right Cheryl. And it isn’t just pastors who feel useless. The everyday person in the pew (or chair) often feels that way as well. Thanks for your prayer Cheryl.