Tuesday, April 21, 2009

What have we done?

I realize that it has been a while since my last blog post. I didn't want to just keep spewing up words everyday just for the sake of making a post, however, I do feel that I need to say something and this is the method I want to use...

I have believed for a while that a persons maturity is not strictly linked to their age. I have met my share, as I'm sure you have, of people who act far less mature than they should be at their age. Conversely, there are also people who speak and act far more mature than they should for their age. A person's age is only the measure of how long it has been since they were born... a person's maturity however, is the measure of their character, actions, speech, and will.

Unfortunately, this same paradigm is true for spiritual maturity. A person's spiritual maturity is not the measure of how long it has been since they got saved... but the measure of their personal character, actions, speech and will.

Why is it that we seem to have relegated the impact of the Christian experience to going to church two times a week, singing a few songs, and giving in the offering?

The true life-altering power of the Gospel lies not just in the hearing of the message of Christ, but in sharing that message that you heard. I'm afraid that the modern day church has missed out on so much of the sweet fruit of love that is supposed to flow so easily out of a heart of compassionate grace because we have subjugated our faith, and in some instances, our lives to the aristocratic clergy-class of pastors and leaders that guide our churches. The majority of the church is no longer active in ministry, they are passive share-holders or at best submissive volunteers in the organization of their church.

Because of this shift in structure from the gospels original intentions, we now have raised a generation (or more) of Christians who never learned how to grow up. Again, if a person's maturity is measured by their character, speech, actions, and will, then all we must do is look at the obvious answer that is screaming at us.

Many church-going, bible-toting, praise and worship-singing, Christians don't display that much maturity in their day to day lives. I'm not talking about the 2 to 4 hours that you are at church in a week. I'm talking about every minute of every day, seven days a week.

Many of the people who flood into sanctuaries all over our country don't know how to study (not just read, but actually study) the Bible on their own... or lead someone to Christ by themselves... or are afraid to pray for someone in public...THIS IS A PROBLEM!

Most of what we know and hear from pew sitters and church goers is complaining, back-biting, gossiping, tattle-tailing, and accusing someone of something... I'm sorry... but that sounds like a two-year old to me!

It seems that we have traded...

Freedom in Christ for Bondage to legalism

Compassion for the lost for Judgment of the sinner

Unity in Christ for Uniformity to rules and doctrine

Faith to act for Fear of criticism and judgment

We must wake ourselves up from the deep slumber of unconscious passivity that is holding us hostage and begin to BE the church of Jesus Christ. Jesus is not coming back for a building, arena, sign, billboard, parking lot, website, podcast, stage, or pulpit. He is returning to meet His Bride who is a person. We must stop seeing the church as a place or building and start seeing it as us... a collection of individual people who are in love with Him and are going to carry out His mission on the earth.