A couple of weeks ago, I talked about the changing of the times for our campus devotionals. The changes weren’t based on needs or how to better do something, but a catchy time. One that would stick out and thus resonate with the students. If you saw the previous article you know how that worked. That is the problem with change, it doesn’t always work.
A year later when we left that ministry and moved to Davis, California to establish their campus work, it was even weirder. The time was fine, 7:00 in the evening for the mid-week Bible study as is the appointed time. . .but, it was on Thursday night! Yeah, that’s right, not Wednesday but Thursday. That was just wrong! Everyone knows that in First Opinions chapter seven verse twenty one, it states that mid-week shall commence on Wednesday--and only Wednesday. And in Third Traditions chapter four verse sixteen we see the example of a Wednesday night mid-week Bible study. So, of course that is when it needs to be. And when you look at the word, it is called mid-week Bible study, not mid-week plus a day, or four sevenths of a week Bible study. It’s the time we get together between Sundays to get us over the hump, and as the GIECO camel tells us that is Wednesday. So any way you look at, this meeting must be on Wednesday.
As I mentioned last time, I do have an inquisitive aspect to my nature. So, rather than just condemning the congregation in Davis, I figured I would do a little investigating first. . . then I would correct them. So I started asking question and the answers were not what I had expected. The Thursday mid-weekish study in Davis was due to labs that students had on Wednesdays. The elders moved the time to allow more students to attend. In less than four years since I had committed my life to Christ and been baptized, I was stuck in the way I was used to and couldn’t imagine things any other way.
Several years later when we moved to Canada, my thinking was again challenged on this mid-week dilemma. The elders in Edmonton had the day correct, but the mode wrong. We met in small groups in homes on Wednesdays. What? Not all at the building where we could hang out with our brothers and sisters? No, in small groups where we could encourage others to come and be a part of the study. The ultimate focus of getting others there was the hope they would become our brothers and sisters by these small group interactions with other Christians reading the Bible together.
Though it sure seemed wrong, it was right. The elders in Davis and in Edmonton had seen a need and had responded to it. Isn’t that what we want our elders to be, men who don’t react, but instead respond? They look at the body, at who we are and what we need to be-- maybe even where we need to grow-- and they respond to that. We need to keep our elders in our prayers, not that they do what we want, but that they do what is needed for us as individuals and as a body to be what God wants us to be.
Timing is everything,