By Cindy Koch –
She spoke in a hushed voice so the other ladies at the table couldn’t quite hear. “Well, he really hates going to church on Sundays. He just wants to sleep in. I guess that’s just the way it goes.” She fake smiled and gave a cute little shrug, but her eyes stared desperately at me for a solution. Three other gals at the table were engrossed in another conversation, so I asked her to continue.
“He used to be into this. Maybe he just doesn’t like the other kids, but I guess he doesn’t feel the Holy Spirit anymore.” Her ashamed posture cut off the conversation as the rest of the group turned their focus back to the little table to take a sip of coffee.
Then we all smiled, chatted about buttons and bows and Pinterest (or whatever it is that women talk about), and said our goodbyes. On the short drive home, I thought long and hard about how this mother perceived her role in her child’s life of faith. I thought long and hard about the all-too-many conversations I’ve had with gals just like her, wondering what to do when her child doesn’t “feel it” anymore.
It makes perfect sense. Of course, a teenage boy is feeling like sleeping in. But my momma friends, through their children, are realizing that feelings are not quite enough to sustain them.
It makes perfect sense. Of course, these gals who go to churches that have a steady diet of emotions and experiences would struggle with anything less than a mountaintop. But somehow, they don’t want to hear about a truth outside of their own heart.
It makes perfect sense. Of course, a Christian who depends on the unknown whims of a floating Holy Spirit would wonder at his every sovereign move. But my friends are caught in a dangerous vortex of a God without sacraments.
A Holy Spirit that floats and zaps above and beyond God’s creation does not offer any comfort. A Jesus that stays in heaven and never descends to bleed and die does not offer a sacrifice for your sin. A God that does not touch His creation and never does works and wonders for the salvation of His people is not the God in the Bible.
So, my friends, hear, taste, touch, and believe that Jesus has died for you. When you feel like it’s not that important, taste the blood Christ spilled to forgive you. When you are angry and hurt, chew on the flesh that Jesus offered for your eternal life. When your baby boy questions who he is, press the sign of the cross on his head and heart and remind him of when God chose him for forever with water.
The sacraments are the Holy Spirit’s hands in creation so that we will endure until the end.