It happened over twenty years ago while I was serving in another Southern California congregation. Part of my call in that place was youth ministry so I spent a lot of time with teenagers. One Sunday evening, following our weekly youth meeting, one of the boys approached me and said he wanted to talk. He was upset with his parents because they would not let him practice sports on Sunday mornings. Instead, they insisted that he worship with them. He asked me to speak with them. I said I would but that I would tell them to stick to their guns and not let the culture set the agenda.
Some years later, after I had come to my current congregation, I ran into the young man and his parents at a waterside restaurant here in Newport Beach. He had just graduated from college and was starting a new job. He remembered our conversation from years before. At first he was angry, he told me, that I had taken the side of his folks. Now, with college behind him and sports a thing of the past, and playing no role in his life, he was thankful that the witness and influence of his parents gave him what he called the “holy habit” of regular worship.
Some things don’t need to be defended. They just need to be said – and done.
“May the peace of God that passes all understanding keep your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus our Lord.”