Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Assistant Coaches Are Needed for Christ's Team

by Robert C. Frank

Christ’s Team, consisting of all the followers of Jesus, is perhaps the largest team on earth. Christ is its coach, but it is always in need of assistant coaches. Assistant coaches for Christ’s Team are Pastors and Priests. Assistant coaches are mentors who teach by example and provide inspiration and encouragement. Like Jesus Christ, they are servant leaders who train others to become servant leaders. 

Christianity appears to be in the early stages of a 21st century reformation. Current teachings and traditions are undergoing unusual scrutiny and that is challenging the faith of the followers of Jesus. In earlier periods, the focus of Christianity was concerned with how to achieve life after death. Christianity, however, has always helped people lead better current lives, so recently the emphasis has been shifted to that part of its teachings, leaving decisions about life after death to God. This will gradually produce a new Christianity that will blossom and grow like the mustard tree mentioned in one of Jesus’ parables. 

However, the uncertainty caused by the current challenges to faith practices and teachings has resulted in a reduction in the number of Pastors or Priests being trained in the seminaries. The uncertainty has also caused a decrease in attendance at weekly church services and this has resulted in decreased financial support for Pastors or Priests. When the new Christianity gradually blooms, the need for Pastors or Priests as assistant coaches will increase as well. New churches are being established in China, India, and many African countries. They need the support of the churches in the US and Europe to make Christ’s Team strong. Serving on Christ’s Team continues to be one of the most noble of all human adventures.

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

The Lord is My Coach

by Robert C. Frank

The 23rd Psalm is a beautiful and very popular psalm even though it was written for an ancient civilization. The following is an effort to rewrite it to make it fit more comfortably in our rapidly changing civilization. The italicized statement is from the original and the bold one is from the suggested version. 

 The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want. 
The Lord is my coach, everything will go well. 

 He makes me lie down in green pastures; 
He invites me to come to him when I am anxious; 

He leads me beside still waters; he restores my soul. 
He encourages me, lifting my spirit, and inspiring me. 

He leads me in right paths for his name’s sake. 
He teaches me; guiding me in my daily activities.

Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Lent: A Time for Christians to Refocus

by Robert C. Frank

Lent is traditionally a time for penitence, but repentance without redirection becomes hollow, so it is also a time for refocusing our lives. There are certain activities that are practiced to solidify our Christian faith. Lent is a time to examine them carefully to see how well we are doing. In the paragraphs that follow we will discuss some of them and try to understand why they are so important.

Prayer is experiencing the presence of God. There are many forms of prayer, but it is often most meaningful when in an atmosphere of silence. The following is a list of possible opportunities for people who lead busy lives. (1) When lying in bed in the morning after waking is a good time to express gratitude for the loving people in our lives. (2) Before meals. (3) Every time we need to wait for someone or something during the day. (4) Upon going to bed at night. The Lord’s Prayer is a beautiful prayer.

Friday, January 6, 2017

Understanding the Relationship Between Love and Teamwork

by Robert C. Frank

Love and teamwork are closely related, but understanding that relationship is vital. Love makes teamwork possible and teamwork makes love functional. Love brings people together, but teamwork is required for them to stay together. Love can come naturally, but teamwork must be learned.

To help us understand this relationship, consider the case of the simplest of all human relations, that between two people, a husband and wife. When they were originally introduced and spent time together they were attracted to each other and had a desire to be together. That attraction is what we call love. After they get married, they find that something else is needed to preserve the relationship and that is teamwork. They must find a way to make their lives fit together smoothly. That will require study, learning, and practice. As a result of their love a husband and wife can conceive a new human life in a few pleasant moments, but bringing that child successfully to adulthood will require teamwork.

Tuesday, November 22, 2016

The Christianity-Science Team

by Robert C. Frank

An observable and indisputable truth is that civilization improved very slowly for thousands of years and now it is improving very rapidly. My view of why this is happening is that the rapid improvement is being produced by the teamwork between Christianity and science.

The servant leadership teaching of Jesus Christ during his life on earth made humans aware that every human life was important. He healed the sick regardless who they were and taught people to take care of each other. His death and resurrection brought forgiveness that provided healing of human relations. Unfortunately, without science, Christianity was limited in the tools it had to work with to carry out God’s plan. Science provides the knowledge required for technology and technology produces new tools to aid people with special needs. For more about science's contribution to Christianity see the slide presentation "How Science Aided the Spread of the Gospel" that appears on the right.

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Teamwork! Teamwork! Teamwork!

by Robert C. Frank

The whole world needs better teamwork including families, churches, governments, and international relations. It is a subtle part of the Christian gospel that has been hovering in the background for thousands of years waiting for it’s time to be acknowledged. It is related to the servant leadership teachings of Jesus Christ during his life. Teamwork requires people to work together in a very special way noted by the Apostle Paul when he compared the followers of Jesus to the parts of the human body (1 Cor. 12 ). 

Each part of the human body is different and has a different function but must make its contribution when needed or other parts of the body will not be able to function properly. If the lungs aren’t doing what they need to do, the hands can’t do what they need to do. All of the members of a team depend upon each other. A baseball team cannot do what it has to do if the catcher isn’t there.