As it regards the church, I feel that I have lived a lifetime of experience in the last several years.
The "world" believes that the church is a "pollyana" place where righteous people come to be with other righteous people. They believe that we are tee-totalers who have never done anything wrong and that we are sailing through life unscathed.
There are two kinds of sinners in the world....lost sinners and saved sinners. That one dividing line is all that separates one of us from the other. But do we, as Christians, make a point of sharing with the lost sinners of the world that we are as wretched as they. That we have lives filled with hurts, with struggles, with deceit and pain; an entire life full of JUNK?
I ran across this today and wanted to share it with you. These words are not mine but they are very fitting for where I am at this moment.
"We need to stop PLAYING church and start BEING the church." - WOW! This statement, was made in a sermon recently at Cross Point Church. When questioned about it, their Pastor provided the following for an explanation.....
It means we need to stop arguing about style of worship and get concerned about the poor and hungry around the world.
It means we need to spend less time gossiping about others and more time allowing God to break our hearts over the people in our cities who are facing an eternity apart from Christ.
It means we need to stop whining about what programs our church has or doesn’t have and we need to learn what it means to abide in Jesus from one moment to the next.
Listen, it’s got to stop. We’ve got to stop showing up on Sunday mornings and playing church. The New testament never calls us to just go to church, but to be the church.
It seems far to often we’ve reduced church down to spiritual masturbation. We’ve made it all about us. We’ve turned it into something we do to stroke our ego-driven, self-centered, materialistic lives. It gives us momentary pleasure, but we’ve failed to give, serve, or sacrifice of ourselves. It leads to false intimacy with our creator God.
We play church.
I’m done with that.
Be the church.
(sound of me stepping off my soap box)
I realize that these are some BOLD thoughts and some BOLD words but I'm convinced that if we did, in fact, stop playing church and started being the church, things would be a lot different for us individually and collectively....not to mention the unchurched folks who have been avoiding us like the plaque.