Cumberland Times-News

May 22, 2008

Churches reflect our culture, spiritual beliefs

David Sandvick, Columnist

A friend of mine was playing in a golf tournament and had to buy some balls, so I asked him what kind he bought. "Super-Long" was his reply.

He went on to explain, however, that it was not an easy choice. Along with the "Super-Long" golf balls were "Super-Straight" balls, "Super-Spin" balls, and "Super-Soft" ones. I must tell you that I've tried the Super-Straight balls and I'm not sure they live up to their name.

At best, the ones I hit should have been called "Rarely-Straight" golf balls. Actually, I've thought of teeing off with a Super-Long ball, hitting my approach shot to the green with a Super-Straight ball, putting with a Super-Soft, and then just taking a victory "Super-Spin" around the green with my arms out like an airplane.

To add to the variety, all these golf balls come in just about any color you want except green. I wonder which of these balls Superman might use. After all, they're all super. I just don't think he'd use a green one because it looks too much like Kryptonite. But, I digress.

Such variety got me to thinking about how different churches are from one another. One church may sing new songs while another finds inspiration in the old ones. One church focuses on the young people while another tries to reach older people. One may have a high and formal feel to it while another is more relaxed.

This variety of churches is a reflection of our culture and our spiritual beliefs about God and Jesus Christ. There are good churches in our community applying the word of God to real life and making a positive difference in people's lives. Try one out this weekend.

As for which "Super Ball" to play, I'm not sure it matters if every club you swing becomes a "Super-Slice." But, if I have to choose, I'll take the "Super-Spin" because that's when I feel most like Superman.

David Sandvick is the pastor of First English Baptist Church in Frostburg.