THE forward. Everyone has gotten them. I find it remarkable that the forward still circulates amongst e-mailers. I also find it crazy how many more forwards come around the holidays. I know my grandpa gets a kick out of the forward. He goes so far as to print them out, so, at anytime he can look back at the words of the Luke 2 Christmas story shaped like a bell. Good for him. I am sure that there are more who love the forward. All of that to set up the fact that I have been getting some forwards from someone, who I did not expect. This person has fully embraced the "yes, this forward has touched me so much that I need to send it to my entire e-mail directory" mentality. I have been checking them out, just to see if any of them are anything more than a long hallmark greeting. So far, not so much.
I got a forward asking, 'Isn't it strange?" And then asking several questions about how strange it is that is easy to do things in the world like sit through a 2 hour movie, sit in the front row at a ball game, read a novel, talk to friends, gossip; but then how difficult it is to sit for an hour at church, sit in front at church, read the Bible, pray, tell people about Jesus. It was actually quite insightful, though not enough to forward.
Two things, first, at the end of this quite insightful forward was the clause, "If you choose not to share His message you may deprive yourself
from being blessed as well as depriving others...
who may need God in their life." Are you kidding me? There is so much to rant about here, I don't even know where to begin. So, I won't, except to say that if you do not send people the link to my blog, I know Jesus will not love you.
Second, with the questions posed in the forward, I wondered about the strangeness of people's lack of desire to dive into spiritual things. I guess I could chock up the cause to Spiritual Warfare, believers must realize that they are a part of a battle over their hearts. Not only do we need to work out our salvation with fear and trembling, when we are not intentional about building our relationship with Christ, we are in danger of being completely in-effective in ministry, which is what all believers are called to. It is Spiritual warfare, but I wonder about the direct role the church plays in this process.
Let's be honest, church as a whole is not usually characterized as fun. I wonder at what point do churches move from reaching, engaging and challenging people and into maintaining a certain level of reverence. I am part of the 'no running in the chapel' generation. I am sure there is a sociological study as to the cultural impact in the church that pushed reverence into the wrong areas. i.e., the chapel, the way people dress and act in church. Without really exploring that I have to think that what was once reverence, spurred a generation of people, who may or may not really believe, who simply do not equate the things of the church with excitement. (which is what makes people read a novel or go to a sports game.)
One of the realities of the church is that we are called to make disciples, joining people into the adventure of a transforming life in Christ. It seems that many churches have moved away from making disciples and towards keeping up with the functionality of the reverent activities of the church. I am going to think more about this idea and post on it later, but for now the question is there. Why is it hard for people to engage at church? And I wonder if the answer actually is making church not boring, which has been the seeker sensitive model of the church.
I'll leave it there for now. Merry Christmas, unless I post again before then, at which time I will recant my Christmas blessing and provide you with a new one, unless you are a sinner and don't tell people about my blog.
The Secret We Can't Talk About
4 years ago