First, I want to offer a bit of thanks. I made it my goal to post a spiritual message each weekday of this year, and thanks to your support I have pushed through to reach that goal. Many of the messages were things that I was personally interested in. Others were put on my heart by the Holy Spirit. A few were suggested by friends. And some…were just for fun.
Since I will be moving to a weekly post format in 2013, I feel like this is the end of an era. So I want to leave you with one final message that I hope sums up my work this year.
Friends, we are way off from the work of the early churches. Their passion in their pursuit of spreading the gospel is unidentifiable in the vast majority of churches today. We focus way too much on meeting our own needs, fitting in with popular culture, and trying to satisfy the “tradition” of what has come before us. We seek to please ourselves and keep our church members content before we think about pleasing God and meeting the needs in our communities.
I really think that we all see this problem. We notice the missed opportunities and the ministry needs that are not being met. We identify the church practices that are self-serving and do nothing to advance the Kingdom of God. We are convicted when we realize that we are living with Christ in our lives, and not living our lives for Christ.
The issue is that we believe that it is bigger than us. And I agree with that. Our culture of complacency and selfishness is far bigger than you or me. Yet, our lack of faith keeps us from realizing that it IS NOT bigger than God. We say all the time that all things are possible with God. But we do nothing to show that we believe it.
If you see the mess that I see in the modern church, then the change starts with you and me. To cause change, we must change. If we want to see a different brand of Christianity, then we ourselves must be different.
It is going to be awkward. It is going to be uncomfortable. It is going to be painful. But it must be done. Join me, will you?