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A wasp gets the point during the sermon
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Preaching can be frustrating when the preacher feels like nobody is listening.

One Sunday night many years ago, I was preaching to a handful of people in a little country church that I served. Since it was cold outside, the gas heaters were burning. There was no insulation in that frame building, so our feet were always cold and our heads were always warm. As the heat rose, a giant wasp made its way out of an opening in the wooden ceiling, looking for cooler air. It zipped back and forth to my left, and finally landed on the attendance board. The attendance board was a rectangular-shaped bulletin board of sorts that hung on the wall. It had grooves in which to put removable cardboard numbers that were changed each week to indicate how many people we had enrolled, how many were in attendance that week, and how much the offering was. I always thought it gave people something to read if the sermon was really boring.

That particular evening, as the wasp landed on the attendance board, one of my deacons rolled up his Training Union quarterly (a quarterly magazine used by Baptists for Sunday night group studies), and marched toward the board. I stopped preaching, since everybody was watching him. He cocked his arm back like a pitcher, and whap! He hit the wasp with his quarterly.

We all watched the dead insect fall to the file floor, as the deacon marched back to his seat. I continued preaching, until another wasp fled the heat, and it, too, landed on the attendance board. Again the deacon stepped up to the plate to take a swing, and again I stopped preaching so that we could all watch the wasp die.

Maybe nobody else got the point, but at least the wasp did.

How about you? Do you get the point of your pastor’s sermon each week? It may take a little action to fully appreciate what he is saying. I’m not talking about swatting wasps or flies, but taking notes. Why not bring a pen and a small notebook, and take notes on your pastor’s sermon? You’ll get the point without having to take a hit.

Copyright 2013 by Bob Rogers. Email: Read this column each Friday in the Herald. Visit my blog at