Several years have passed since I last attended the service at the First Baptist Church in Allen, Texas.
It’s big and over the top, in my opinion. Upon first entering, one is confronted with the sounds of an orchestra tuning up, plus a large video screen displaying a summary of the days message. At the bottom, in bold letters is the phrase: Please Turn Off your Cell Phones”. That was never a problem until the day it slipped my mind.
Things happen to old men, one of them is the loss of hearing. Consequently, mine is always set to maximum even though no one ever calls me. Never.
Unfortunately, it went off half way through the preacher’s sermon. I tried desperately to turn the thing off, but that was a tall order without standing. When I finally succeeded, the preach and I were the only two standing. The other 1198 people, give or take, had a good long look at the culprit.
Embarrassed beyond words, I returned home wondering what, if anything, I could do to rectify the situation I’d created. There was no obvious solution, so I attended church the following Sunday, sitting up front so he would know I was back and sorry. But that was not enough. That morning the good preacher’s sermon focused on cell phones and the folks who allowed them to ring during his service.
I suppose his congregation is large enough that my wife, our daughter, her husband, two grandchildren, and I, six of us in all, were never missed.