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Talking To Think, Pre-Marital Counseling, and The Truth

Not long ago, I was meeting with a very nice young couple and beginning the process of pre-marital counseling.

And during our initial conversation, the subject of the role faith would play in their marriage came up.  As you would expect it would, given that I am a pastor and all.

Anyway, the concept of the “role of faith in your marriage” quickly morphed into “how committed will we be to church attendance as a couple?”

I find that happens a lot in pre-marital counseling.

So I recognized what was going on — in other words, “faith = church attendance three times per month” — and redirected.

And in re-directing, I went off script.  I started some verbal processing.  Speaking spontaneously.  What we often call around here “talking to think.”  If you know anything about how I am wired and how I operate, you know how unusual and dangerous that is.  Because I am much more often one who “thinks to talk.”

Yet on this occasion, something good emerged.  It actually happened that I kept talking til something good came out.  Because as I was sharing with the couple that church attendance is but a means to the end of a living relationship with Jesus Christ, I blurted this:

I don’t want my preaching to instill loyalty to the church at the expense of surrender to Jesus.

Then, true to form, I asked the couple, “can you wait a minute while I write that down?  That will preach one day.”

Or it will blog today.

Because I don’t want my preaching to instill loyalty to the church at the expense of surrender to Jesus.

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