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Back in the day, there were “men’s meetings.”
These took place before the regular business meeting, often a couple of hours earlier. Not that the women didn’t have a voice in the business meeting, however; the lion’s share of the decisions were made in these “men’s meetings.”
Such was one of these. Again, as a young minister, it was an eye opening experience. It all began with the normal task of filling the pulpit on an upcoming Sunday, while our pastor was going to be away in revival services.
I was still too inexperienced for this, and quite content to chomp on the bit of preaching on Wednesday night youth meetings. Pastor had someone in mind and normally he would have taken care of it and moved on to the next task. He had planned to do this again this time.
One small wrench in the cogs: when he mentioned this in passing and who in advance, there were eyebrows raised and objections voiced.
The preacher in question was an elderly man, was even an active member of the church; but apparently there was some ‘baggage’ in his life. Our pastor was a very accepting man, forgiving and willing to let the past stay in the past. Others were not so kind, and thus the controversy began.
At the time I stayed with a loving elderly couple on Sundays. Naturally, along with the fried chicken and cornbread, this made it on to the table as a topic of discussion. The thing stressed most to us three men sitting there was to be peacemakers.
So we walked over to the church with every intention of doing that. The meeting was held, the decision was made and we moseyed back for a quick nap before church.
After sharing the news, we were greeted with the cries of, “I thought you were going to be peacemakers.” Much to our surprise, we were supposed to be peacemakers, but with a different decision made.
Being a peacemaker is a lofty goal. Not always is it a popular vocation.
Being a peacemaker is what Jesus called us to do, and with it we receive his blessings. So the next time you are instructed to be a peacemaker by folks with an agenda, do the right thing and be a peacemaker for God. Why? “Blessed are the peacemakers!”
Brother Tim Johnson is pastor of Fellowship Baptist Church on Hammonds Creek Road in Lawrenceburg..