By Mike Dawson
Pastor Emeritus, First Baptist Church, Columbia
Focal Passage: Philemon 8-21
Two ‘work crews’ can be observed in many churches. One is the demolition crew; they’re skilled at tearing down, ripping out, crushing, and trashing. They find fault, criticize, gossip and can pretty well wreck the place. On the other hand there’s the restoration crew.
These faithful souls seek to unite, make peace, and help restore broken hearts and broken relationships. In today’s study the Apostle Paul is shown to be a member—in fact a leader—of the restoration crew.
A few years ago a dear pastor friend ‘hit a brick wall’ emotionally, and found himself in serious trouble. He resigned his church, and could have easily faded from pastoral ministry. Instead, he went through an intense, honest, transparent time of restoration. I’m thankful to have served as a member of his ‘restoration crew.’ The brother’s marriage and family are stronger than ever, and he is pastoring again—very effectively so—and God is using him mightily. [Read more…]