I’m sitting in my office right now, pondering John 1:6-14. “And we have seen his glory, the Glory of the Father’s one and only Son.” I’ve had a few conversation today, worked on some admin work, and prepared for a group of students I’ll be meeting with tomorrow night. In the midst of all that, the song “Waymaker” by Leeland pops onto my Amazon Echo, and I’m changed. I start to worship in my office, not caring if anyone from the one or two groups meeting around me, hear me or see me should they pass my windowed door.
Category: Current Events
Apparently a young 20 something from California who migrated to Columbus with his wife wrote a handful of songs he wanted to share with a few of his friends from church. Henry is painfully shy, yet looks like a rock star (my first impression) but he went to friends, including one of my best friends in high school, and asked if he could perform some of those songs for them. At the same time, I asked Clay if my wife and I could come hang out with them for New Year’s.
All the pieces came together.
“ I don’t think people want cool when it comes to their church, I think they want unity. The difference is huge, and I think the church in general should pay attention to this. Many new churches that have a cool and relevant way about them are growing, and so we think somehow, (and I have certainly thought this) that the reason for this growth is because the church is cool. “
John Crist recently became another in a long line of famous Christian men who found their career and reputations destroyed by a serious breach of ethics. He’s not even the first comedian to hurt the name of Jesus with his actions.
Three years ago I launched a mission with the intent purpose to save lives, not in the spiritual sense, but in the literal physical sense. Dead people cannot hear the gospel, can they? But a victim of a disaster who is grateful for saving their lives or the lives of their family, is fertile soil for witnessing your love and compassion to strangers and they might just want to ask what compels you to such sacrifice and action.
The thing about expectation is it is often not rooted in love, but in pride. I expect you to live a certain way or believe a certain thing or walk a particular road, not because I love you and it’s best for you, but because of the pride I have in my own heart that would be embarrassed if you took a certain path. After all, I influenced you and trained you to be a particular person, right?
In the past, I never wanted to be part of a house church. There’s nothing flashy about that. There’s no place in “America’s Fastest Growing Churches” magazine for my little house church. I’d see these large churches with massive buildings and thousands of attendees and thought, “man what a testament to God’s Spirit being poured out.” Until you get involved in larger churches and then realize that most of those people aren’t even followers of Jesus. That was the part that kept nagging at me. All the time and effort (and tons of finances) poured out to grow the gathering but not adding to the Church.
One of the struggles of living in the Christian world is the inability of many Christians to be flexible about their beliefs. This is due, in no small part, to the enlightenment, coupled with “modernity” and its belief or philosophy that we can know everything as humans. So science can tell us everything we need to know about the world or the Bible tells us everything we need to know about God. This was of course the response of mankind to the middle or the “dark” ages where only a few special people, whether they were kings or priests, held the keys to knowledge or spirituality.
A popular church word people throw out these days is the word “authenticity”. It speaks of those in the gathering being real and speaking their mind, but ironically in many of the churches who speak of this authenticity, no one actually speaks anything at all of their mind. Lights go out. Band plays. Cue Video. Pastor walks on to the stage, tells a cool story, combined with a quick Bible verse about love (makes us say “awww), forgiveness (makes us cry), or giving (makes us cringe). In the end, a few stick around to talk about the weather or sports, but most leave quickly because of the things they have to do in real life.
The times in our lives where we felt closest to being the New Testament Church were when we had a small group of people at our home. We broke bread, we prayed, we worshipped, we read God’s word together… we reached out and blessed others… we met each other’s needs. We were a church.