When I was growing up my grandfather gave us all nicknames. While I know where he got mine from, I don’t really know how he came up with the others. For instance he called my brother “Coon”. At family gatherings he, and our relatives, would call us by those names. Fortunately our nicknames soon passed away as we got older and my grandfather died.

The fact is today nobody would call someone “coon”. I mean if my brother were alive and we met at a public event no way would I yell out, “Hey Coon I’m sitting over here”. I would offend a whole lot of folks, and while I meant no harm, it’s just not a word you use these days.

The fact is there are a number of words that we don’t use today as we don’t want to offend others. As you know, and I’m aware of as well, there have been times when I’ve suffered from “foot in mouth” disease and offended others. I can tell you as I remember my mistake I beat myself up over it far more than you may imagine as the last thing I want to do is offend someone.

However, as Believers we are caught betwixt and between as our language will be offensive. In talking with church members, I’ve heard the story of how a friend prayed in Jesus name and then was told he could not do that again. One of our men found employment elsewhere after being told that he’d be reprimanded for praying in Jesus name. Unfortunately that mindset is only growing and people are very vocal when you share the truth of the Gospel.

Our challenge of sharing Christ and not being offensive was faced by others years ago. In the Book of Acts, 4:18, the disciples were released from prison and told not to preach using Jesus name again. Of course they didn’t follow that order. We want to be as harmless as doves but we must stand for Christ and share the truth of the Gospel. Jesus did that and they crucified Him. The Apostles did that and they were martyred or abandoned to die a solitary death.

Our challenge is to be loving, kind and tender but to also take our place with the saints of old and speak the name of Jesus even if it’s offensive.

As you pray today remember the Martin, Mason and Ayers family as Landon Martin, 11 years of age, won the battle with cancer and went home to heaven last week. His funeral will be Wednesday, 2:00 p.m., here at the church. Visitation is Tuesday 6 – 8 Tharp Funeral Home.

Continue to pray for Brian Custer as he gets closer to surgery. The procedure is risky, but needed, so pray for complete success when they operate.

Hope you were here and saw the video’s about mom’s. I still laugh about the child who said mom was 72 and the other who said mom was 13. Probably every mom of a preschooler went home and tried to help their child know their age.

Speak the truth in love,

Pastor Carl