Thursday, February 11, 2010

Long Live Eutychus ... Again!

Eutychus. It's a name that, to the best of my knowledge, has only been used once. (Take note Chris and Laura. It's under used and available.) It seems that he was this guy written about in the book of Acts. Chapter 20. Verses 7 - 12. Paul was preaching (not so unusual) up in this 3rd floor room. The lamps were lit. The windows were open. The place was full of people. I guess it got warm and Eutyhcus sought fresh air from a perch on a window sill. Problem is, Paul kept on preaching. Midnight came and midnight went. He preached on. In his deep slumber poor Eutychus lost his balance and fell out of the window. As fate would have it he fell "out" rather than "in." Three floors down.


Paul ran downstairs and found him dead on the sidewalk. Vegas odds would have it that Paul would have said, "Serves you right." and gone back to his preaching. It seems to me that he stepped out of character when he stretched himself out on the corpse, hugged him, and then called the life back into that increasingly cold lump of clay. Then they all went back upstairs to celebrate the resurrection of Eutychus with communion and, you guessed it, more sermonizing from Paul. He spoke about the great acts of faith until after dawn. Paul might have been full of compassion, he might have exercised grace, but he didn't learn his lesson.

I spoke on the story of Eutychus at Towerview last Sunday. The sermon was aptly titled, "Boring You To Death." And I just can't get him out of my mind. Several people seem to have the same problem. But they have thrown an odd slant onto it by sending a link to a newspaper article to me. I'll give the credit to a friend, Brant Dixon, because he was first. Here is a brief summary of the article as copied from

"Melbourne, Feb 8 (ANI): Boredom can actually kill you, a new study has revealed.

To reach the conclusion, researchers at University College London looked at data from 7524 civil servants, aged between 35 and 55, interviewed between 1985 and 1988 about their levels of boredom. They then found out whether they had died by April last year. Those who reported feeling a great deal of boredom were 37 per cent more likely to have died by the end of the study, the researchers found."

There's more but I think you get the drift. So what is the moral of the story? Well, I think those of us who stand up to teach God's Word have an obligation to NOT bore people with it. Grant it, Eutychus was probably in an oxygen deprived room and it was after midnight. But still. When God instructed me to speak on this subject He brought the phrase to mind, "Let my people go!" I have been a little long winded lately.

I'm reforming.

So for all of you Eutychus wannabees out there, that's good news. But let's not forget the obvious. Only YOU can make certain that you are living in the flow of the Spirit in a way that brings life and energy to your daily routine ... much less to your Sunday worship experience. We haven't heard the last of Eutychus around Towerview. Pastor's don't preach on his story very often. But he's captured my attention and my imagination. Fortunately we have sealed windows and they are only three feet off of the ground. But it is still wise for those who spend much of our lives "doing church" to remember ...

boredom kills.

So let's get it right.