Monday, February 23, 2009

The PR Problem

I have to admit that closer that we get to our new organic church, the more and more excited I become. I have had more than a few conversations with friends and family. Some have been very supportive, others have been less. But, there is an overwhelming themes that keeps re-emerging in different conversations at different times. It is to this theme that I would like to address my attention.

Most Christians when I share with them the basic idea of organic faith and organic church are supportive of the concept. (It would be hard to still be a Christian and not support evangelism) However, most are also skeptical and weary. Not in the mission, but in the method. I have been inundated with questions and issues such as doctrinal integrity, positional authority, and even flawed structure or thinking. Though, I do believe some of these issues are valid and should be discussed, think they are putting the cart before the horse.

Personal Responsibility should be the first concern. So many of us who have grown up "in church" see ourselves as part of the whole, which we most certainly are, without seeing ourselves as the individuals that we also are. This is not a mutually exclusive relationship.

We are each an individual ambassador of Christ

AND

We are each part of the whole that is the Bride of Christ


We see this personal responsibility in the words of Christ:

"If anyone would come after me,
he must deny himself
and take up his cross and follow me."

This quote from Jesus is recorded in three of the four gospels: Matt 16:24, Mark 8:34, and Luke 9:23. Jesus said "he" and "his" not "they" and "theirs". The responsibility to both carry and proclaim the gospel is personal... not corporate.

All too often we get so used to being a part of a church and participating in the activities and programs of that church that we think that that is all that we need do in order to be an active member of the Body and the Fellowship of Christ. But this is no more than a cruel lie from the enemy himself.

By steering our minds to the concept that being a member or supporter of a church or ministry is ALL that we are to do... he has incapacitated generations of Christians! Weakened and marginalized, many believers now sit helplessly on the sidelines while the battle for souls rages right in front of their eyes! And the sad reality is... some don't even know it.

We are to be a member of a body of believers. That is clear. But, we are not meant to be passive or inactive as members. Being a part of a football team doesn't negate the player from action. Neither should being a member of a local church cause us to abdicate our personal responsibility to share the gospel and relegate it to the pastor and his staff.

Throughout scripture and the church age that has followed one thing has held constant. When true followers of Christ took personal responsibility to grow in faith, share their faith, and disciple others in the faith the result was renewal, revival, and reformation.

- Just a thought.

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