I often think about how the original churches might have carried on in ministry. What types of church services did they have? Did they look anything like ours?
When we think of Bible characters like the apostle John, who wrote a bunch of books and faithfully served God through thick and thin… we sometimes forget that Bible characters were mere humans. They got sick and tired of stuff in life. They carried on kind of like we need to carry on–week in, week out faithfulness.
I think of how these men once had mighty ministries. I think about men like John who authored several books of out Bible. But then I think about what Bro. Schwanke preached on–that John was an old, old man, pastoring for decades before God used him to write Revelation.
What in the world did he do all his life? How many people did he lead to the Lord? How many more beatings did he receive for standing for God? How did Ephesus eventually receive his teachings?
We don’t really know. We just know that John was human, and that he struggled with the same things we struggle with. I like when preachers “humanize” the Bible characters for us, the way Bro. Schwanke did. John is not an “untouchable” Bible character. He’s a simple human pastor. He labored for decades by ministering day by day, week by week. We read about the highlights in Bible characters’ lives. Bur don’t forget that in between those highlights falls a bunch of mundane stuff–choir practices, church services that have a particular order, weekly ministries, preparations for big outreach days, daily drawing closer to God.
That’s the Christian life! I make things too comlicated when I over-think. I’m pretty sure John was just a faithful man, not some flash-in-the-pan experience seeker. Let’s be like old, old Pastor John.