Local Church Crisis!

When a congregation realizes that the fateful time has arrived when their present pastor is reaching the extremity of his pantry of canned sermon outlines and his three year tenure of office is drawing to a close, they then do the only scriptural measure left for them, namely send their ad into the Gospel Advocate declaring to the great brotherhood of "The Church of Christ" the dire and grave catastrophe which has befallen them (that day of darkness and gloominess, the day of clouds and thick darkness) -- a vacant pulpit!

In their advertisement the qualifications are set forth with the utmost of lucidity, the qualifications which must be met by any prospective employee --that fortunate young knave who will proudly occupy that exonerated, venerated, and much envied position of "our minister." But he must be qualified, for the welfare of the flock must be always foremost.

The ad is unmistakably plain in declaring that the future man for the job is to be 30 years old, having attended a minimum of 4 years at one of the "Christian colleges," no less than a bachelor of arts degree, and of course married with two children, and last mentioned but of primary importance A GOOD MIXER AND VOID OF ANY HOBBIES.

Then comes the terrible, excruciating task of choosing from the 25-30 contenders for the position just who will be the fortuitous young lad. When the heaven sent one has evidently arrived upon the scene (this is indicated during the "trial sermon" by the benign smile which graces the countenance of Sister Elder (who is actually the woman behind the scenes of the congregation) it is truly "that great day of the feast," a day of happy anticipation. The brethren then retire to the back room to give their mandate to the approving nod of Sister Elder. And after an hour or so in arranging the details of the contract such as the minister's office hours, salary, paid vacations, and the number of meetings he is allowed to hold in addition to his regular pastoral duties, the awe-inspiring decision is handed down to that faithful little band patiently waiting in the auditorium that this is truly the best-mixing, back-slappingest, middle-of-the-road-man they've been looking for. So thusly, after the due process of pious pondering and deep meditation and contemplation, their most awe-some destiny fixing decision is reached --ANOTHER THREE AUSPICIOUS YEARS OF CHAMELEONISTIC SERMONIZING!

Already it is time that we "wake out of sleep" (Rom. 13:11).