Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Back... To the Future!

I can now safely add, "Fixes leaking basement problems" to my resume. I'm certainly no carpenter, but it seems to me that when the drain spouts coming down from the gutters are dumping gallons of water two inches away from the wall, you have a problem. We just couldn't figure out why the church basement kept getting flooded when it rained. So I did the only logical thing and took a walk around the building. I got longer spouts, directed the water away from the building and boom... problem solved.

When I first came to the church I've been Pastoring now for over 2 1/2 years, the urinal in the men's room didn't flush. "Oh," I was told, "you just fill this here Maxwell House can with water and..." Please. It took a qualified plumber with a little know-how and a $25 part to fix the problem. His name was John, which I find kind of funny. But I digress.

How often do we just accept the fact that the basement leaks, the urinal won't flush, the floor squeaks and that door always sticks because that's the way it has always been? I've been looking at the church through fresh eyes as part of a project I'm working on to complete my Ordination studies. Why not repaint that chip in the wall? Have we ever shampooed the carpeting? Wouldn't a gallon of paint freshen up that ugly wall downstairs? We can get so used to the way things are that we just accept them. But what about taking inventory and seeing where things can be improved? A simple $24 spotlight I bought on Ebay drastically improved the dim lighting on the stage. Hanging a banner and moving a couple plastic Ficus trees (every church has to have at least two) gave us a fresh look too.

It all ties in well with my new-found commitment to look toward the future without dwelling on the past. "We've always done it that way" won't cut it in the church anymore. Not with a new post-modern millennialist generation that can't sit still for two minutes. The times, they are a-changin', and we have to adapt. And that means I have to adapt, too.

"Those who forget the mistakes of the past are doomed to repeat them." That's true. But the same can be said for those who continue to live there. Why not resolve to take a look at yourself today through a new lens? What have you accepted about you that not only can be changed, but should be changed? Are you living life like an old home movie that's been rotting away in a garbage dump for years? Why not make a new start... today?

Come back to the future. It's a great place to be.