I sat behind my desk in my classroom. The memories of the classroom were all coming back to me- the smell of Pine-Sol; the lesson plans, cupboards full of curriculum; the seating charts and attendance taking.
And then my cell phone rang. I couldn’t recognize the number, but I knew who it was. Immediately, the Holy Spirit told me it was someone from that room full of praying people. I almost let it go to voicemail, but I didn’t. “Hello?”
“Pastor Tom, my name is Mark, and I’m representing about 25 people who would love to attend your Bible study. Would you consider it?”
“Twenty five people?” I questioned. “Combining your people with my five families would be too many to fit in my home.” I thought Mark might pick up on my skepticism and end the conversation.
“Oh no, Pastor Tom, your home is not what I‘m suggesting. We’re offering you the whole storefront facility if you want it.”
“You mean the whole church?”
“Yeah, the whole church.” Mark explained, “You see, the Methodist denomination didn’t want anything. They have no need for the chairs, the sound equipment, Sunday-school supplies, nothing! All they wanted was the money we have in the bank.”
“So, the church is not being used at all?” I questioned.
“That’s right. They left everything.” Mark waited for my reaction. “Plus the denomination paid off the lease for the next three months.”
“No bills for three months,” he said. “We’re a church without a pastor, and you’re a pastor without a church. We thought maybe...”
“I’m Charismatic,” I interrupted. “And you’re Methodists. That might be like oil and water, ya think?”
“The church was Methodist, not all of us. Besides, last time I checked, Methodists love Jesus, too. This group loves God, and they love His Word,” he affirmed. “And all the families just want to stay together. We thought maybe God answered our prayers by sending you.”
How could I say no to that? I thought. I told him I would pray about it and get back to him.