Why are you not here? This is a question we need to reflect on. As a Pastor, Minister, Church worker, Deacon, Leader (or whichever is applicable) you have taken the route of convenience and compromise; the path where the crowd are always singing your praise and wouldn’t dare to point out the shortcomings in your ministry of faith. You have showed predictability and balance in your ministry of faith and as a result, you have received praise and affirmations from the world of current church people as well as from God.
Such is the life of the present day church worker, no matter how much money she has and the many worldly ambitions she has. Don’t get me wrong, the atmosphere of the church service will definitely help you in your ministry of faith, but the external noise and distractionsof the show will be like comparing the Sound of Music with the noise of traffic and the many other things that will invade your hearing as you drive to work in the mornings.
I realize that many of us pastors are caught up in the majesty of our ministry and would do well to study the words of Jesus who said,”the greatest prophet that ever lived” Matt 9:10….”and “do not worry about your singing ….”… Matt 6:7 …Descipline yourself to be quiet and he will grant you…..”This is good new…..”
Many people are totally surprised that a pastor of a large church like the one I work for(the largest church in the world) is not on some kind of drugs, or in some kind of trouble with the law, or in some way could be negatively affecting his work environment. But my friend, what I find interesting about such judgments is that they really only matter when it comes to the people in your church. There, you have to be cautious in drawing judgments.
I know that there are many people in churches who have good intentions, but are not careful about their own actions and words (no matter how pious, or sincere, or serious they may sound). And I know that there are a good number of people who make sincere efforts to make things better for the people they are intimately connected to, but Jesus says to us “To love our neighbor, as we have loved him. (Matt 22:37).
My pastor in Kalihi is not in prison, and lives a quiet life with his family, yet I find it ridiculous that I would pay close to $500 for a full body, or for a full book on how to be a successful spiritually, and yet ignore the basic instructions that are ALWAYS in the bible for the average person. I mean, I agree that there is more to the Christian life ( trooper), and to being a follower of Christ ( soldier), than what the palmerly chase after the things of this world have to offer. But, if the pastors of the top Christian churches were not putting themselves in harms way, and yet were not creating unnecessary problems in the lives of many in their churches, I think the apathetic attitude toward religion and the supposed Christian way of life would be very popular among the rank and file church members. But, in reality, too many Christians are happy to overlook such “uddle hole” type teachings, and prefer to listen to well meaning and sincere, yet flawed teachers.
Also, by the way, in my judgment, the standards for what constitutes Christianity are so high and lofty, that people like me, who actually have found a way to be successful in life without all of therine, could never hope to ever hope to fit in. The teaching is that there is no such thing as failure, and that human failure is no longer operative in the final analysis. You see, the Savior of mankind, Jesus Christ, does not contend with the world’s belief in self-help, self-righteousness, self-centeredness, and in many other sanken beliefs and attitudes.
It’s very popular in the self-help genre to warn Christians about falling and progressing from the grace of God into the arms of worldly life. There is a gospel that is preached with such passion and passion that it’sName is changed often to avoid it. The object is to make believers out of men and women who have aiconceptof pride, conceit, conceit toward one another, unbelief toward God in Christ, and other evil associations.
What we need in our faith community isn’t a Gospel of laws, but aGospel of Grace. We have found it to be true that no one is righteous, not even one inch of their foot. We have come to believe that no one is immune to the sin of Adam and Eve. We believe that we have the full measure of faith to be Christians. But weconfessesinfMagic is the key word that defines our relationship to God.