It’s amazing the things you can learn when you go to church. It’s even more amazing what you can learn when you go AND pay attention. It certainly helps though when you have two Pastor’s that make it easy to stay engaged with their sermons. But having said that, when I started going back to church at Full Gospel Tabernacle in Wheatfield, In, I was still more concerned with what was going on outside of church later on that morning.
What could possibly be more important than what the preacher was talking about? As a Pittsburgh Steelers blogger, I had to mentally go over key matchups and keys to victory for that days game. I had to mentally conjure up a quick pregame blog so that I could quickly type it up and publish it before the game. Same with Pirates games during the summer.
It’s not like I didn’t want to be in church or anything. I just wanted to kill two birds with one stone. Yet I couldn’t figure out why I wasn’t getting more out of Pastor Craig’s or Pastor Ken’s sermon’s. One Sunday the reason hit me like a ton of bricks. That Sunday’s sermon centered around those pesky distractions that keep us from building a closer relationship with Jesus.
I can’t even begin to count how many times the same thing occurred when I’d get home from work. My wife and kids tried to talk to me, just like the preacher on Sunday, and I’d only hear half of what they were saying. I let the distractions of blogging and related social media research interfere with family relationships as well, but I digress.
The point is, the Pastor’s challenge to us that Sunday was to eliminate one distraction in our lives that was getting in the way of drawing closer to Jesus. After all, how can we build a close relationship with him if Jesus doesn’t get our full attention. It’s the same with any relationship. However, our relationship with Jesus Christ is the the ultimate one. It’s our relationship with Jesus that makes all the other ones in our lives so much better.
I took the Pastor’s challenge to heart. Shortly after I got rid of Facebook. Just getting rid of all the negative vibes that come from there was worth it by itself. Same thing came from dumping the daily Twitter ritual. Both gave me more time to read the bible app on my phone. Eventually, even though I loved it, I quit blogging about Pittsburgh sports. I didn’t produce a single article this past season and it has been worth it.
Eliminating those distractions has made a huge difference in my pursuit of a real relationship with our Lord and Savior. But I also understand I have a LONG way to go to have the relationship I want to with him. That’s what makes starting Second 2 One so rewarding. First, I get to blog about something truly fullfing, and secondly, doing so keeps me focused on Pastor Ken and Pastor Craig’s sermon each Sunday I can go.
Hopefully they’ll understand though if I unintentionally nod off when I’m coming off of a 3-11/midnight double before church that morning. At least I made it there.