The Strange Case of Brenda Maxwell

This is a very timely post written by Ken Fryer, posted with permission, that speaks to a current controversy and serves as a case study to demonstrate how a failure to be faithful in a seemingly small thing creates much larger problems.


“Note: All characters appearing in this post are fictitious. [Editors Note. More or less…

A married woman with two children, ages 9, 13 by the name of Brenda Maxwell is a prominent member of First Baptist Church Big in a large metropolitan area. She is a very gifted communicator with a vibrant, charismatic personality. For quite some time she had been contemplating how she could use her gifts of communication and connecting with people in a greater way in the church. One evening, she read a verse of scripture which says, “But every wife who prays or prophesies with her head uncovered dishonors her head, since it is the same as if her head were shaven” (I Corinthians 11:5). As she was reading the passage in I Corinthians, she remembered that the prophetess Deborah was one of the Judges of Israel. She quickly turned to the Book of Judges and read, “Now Deborah, a prophetess, the wife of Lappidoth, was judging Israel at that time. She used to sit under the palm of Deborah between Ramah and Bethel in the hill country of Ephraim, and the people of Israel came up to her for judgment” (Judges 4:4-5). Brenda meditated upon the verses for a few days and came to the conclusion that God was speaking to her about starting a Sunday School class. She approached her husband Kevin with the idea, and he was predictably enthusiastic about the idea. He responded, “I know of no one who is a more gifted communicator, and people always respond so positively to you!” With that, she had her answer. God had told her to teach a Sunday School class in the church.  With her husband’s support, she requested a meeting with her pastor, a well-known man who had served in a number of high-profile positions in the Baptist denomination. When she told him about the task to which she believed God was calling her, he responded with great affirmation and excitement. He said, “I’ve known this was coming for a long time. I knew that the Lord was calling you to do something like that!” He continued, “The next Sunday School quarter starts in three weeks, and the teachers are already in place, however, I see no reason why we can’t go ahead and start the class next quarter.” He suggested that she begin by forming a class for women who were not currently attending Sunday School. Brenda Maxwell agreed, and was excited about her new assignment.  She told the pastor that she would like to do a study on the subject of spiritual gifts, and he agreed. She went home, began studying diligently, and contacted women who were not involved in a Sunday School class…”

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[Contributed by Dustin Germain]

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