By Jim Faughn
Most of us are used to a
somewhat climate-controlled environment. When
the temperature gets a little too warm or too cool
for us, we simply adjust a thermostat.
That wasn’t my experience
when I was growing up. We had one stove in our
house. It was not all that close to my
bedroom. I can remember getting very cold in
my bed-room on some of those winter nights.
I can also remember those
hot summer nights when our one window fan did not
exactly “do the trick.” Some of my friends had
air conditioning, but we did not. I remember
wishing that we did.
At the same time, I also
remember something about those hot summers that
might be advantageous for the church today.
I remember screen
It was difficult to go in
or out of our house without somebody knowing about
it. Screen doors had those springs on
them. It didn’t take me long to find out that
I could just turn loose of the door and it would
close all by itself. As I remember it, my
parents were not as thrilled with that discovery as
I was. On those somewhat rare occasions when I did
manage to not let the door slam shut behind me and
make a noise, the distinctive sound of the spring
itself would announce my entrance or
Now, when our grandchildren
are at our house, people can often go in and out of
our house without anybody knowing. That is due
in part to the fact that some of them have never
learned the fine art of closing a door behind them,
so there is no sound to announce their entrance or
Not only can people go in
and out unannounced, but some of the “climate
control” on the inside finds its way outside.
Also, some of the outside elements (and maybe a
varmint or two) find their way inside.
It might be helpful if we
had screen doors on our house. We would at
least know who was in and who was
It occurs to me that it
might be helpful to have screen doors on the
church. I’m not talking about the church
building, but the church itself.
In far too many cases, we
may “leave the door ajar.” Because of that, it
is difficult to know who is in and who is out.
People “drift in” with little fanfare and “drift
out” without anybody noticing.
According to Revelation
22:14-15, the Lord has no trouble distinguishing
between those “…who may enter the city by the
gates…” and those who are “outside.” While our
level of discernment can in no way compare with His,
it seems to me that many of us could increase our
interest in, and concern for, each
Wouldn’t it be encouraging
to know that others care whether or not I am
enjoying the fellowship of other Christians or am
“out there somewhere” where my soul is in
danger. Does anybody know and does anybody
care whether or not I “…have the right to the tree
of life…” (Rev. 22:14)?
Would it help if we had
screen doors on the church?
- Jim Faughn serves as an elder and preacher for the
Central Church of Christ in Paducah KY. He may
be contacted through the congregation's website: