Recently we changed the sign out in front of the church because we were heading into the fall schedule which includes the resumption of Sunday School and our Adult Studies. It is also a season for a new sermon series so the new title was posted.
The first question came when someone asked about why we were teaching “resume” writing in Sunday School. When I looked at the sign, it became apparent why they asked this; the sign said “SUNDAY SCHOOL RESUMES.” Two definitions; same word…albeit pronounced differently! See my post of 2019.09.24 about language.
But over the next few days, as I passed the sign, something did not sit right but I couldn’t figure it out. Then it occurred to me. The sermon series title read:
“THE UNPARALELLED PARABLES”
Now if you are honest, several of you did not immediately pick up the misspelling. Some might have looked at the word parable, but that is not it. It’s the second word that contains all the right letters but has an “L” out of place. Three of us looked at this and nobody picked it up at the time. We fixed it…no harm, no foul.
Here is one even funnier. Several years back, we worked with a billboard company to advertise for the church just before the fall season. We went back and forth with the company to get the billboard just right. It had a catchy phrase, a beautiful picture of many of us standing in front of the church, the name and details of the church, and even a “Check us out on Facebook!” statement. Multiple eyes, including the designers, looked at proofs, and then we pushed the button. It was a “Go!”
The billboard went up and we showed the picture to the congregation during announcments, and somebody pointed out that we had spelled Presbyterian incorrectly. Oh my gosh, it was wrong..We were “First Prebyterian Church!” We couldn’t even spell our name correctly! Some of our people were mortified, but I just laughed. I even wanted to go up to the sign location and spray paint in red paint the letter “s” with an insertion arrow above the omission until we could have it fixed. I didn’t, but it did get fixed rather quickly…no harm, no foul.
It just goes to show you that we have grown accustomed to having our computers fix our misspellings or at least put the red line under a word so we know it is misspelled. We rely on the software to have our backs.
In the life of the faithful, we have a “Spell Check” of sorts. The Holy Spirit is always there to clean up or at least point out our errors (sins). We could chose to ignore it, or we can learn to trust it. Can we become accustomed to it?
Lord knows we can’t always rely on each other. When we rely on ourselves or other humans, we can go on misspelling and not even notice. (by the way, my computer pointed out I misspelled “mispell”!)
When the Spirit of truth comes, he will guide you into all the truth, for he will not speak on his own authority, but whatever he hears he will speak, and he will declare to you the things that are to come.John 16:13 esv