Tuesday, July 29, 2008

I've been thinking

I have been reading some interesting books recently about what the church of Jesus Christ was designed to be vs. what it has become. I have been a member of First Christian Church for 26 years and it has been a very positive and very important part of my life. I thank God for the opportunity to be a part of the body of Christ. People in my church reached out to my husband and I when we were very lost and headed for disaster. I am in no way condemning the corporate worship that is the church of America today. What I am thinking is - "is that all there is?"

About three months ago I read Pagan Christianity by George Barna and Frank Viola and learned that most of what Christians do in present-day churches is not rooted in the New Testament, but in pagan culture and rituals developed long after the death of the apostles.

This was a real eye opener for me. My "non-denominational" denomination born out of the Restoration Movement teaches that we are Christian only- There were a number of preachers in different religions and sections of America during that time who started to emphasize a return to the pristine Christianity of the New Testament. Many of whom claimed as their motto, "Where the Bible speaks; we speak; where the Bible is silent, we are silent".
So, why do we do what we do like we do it? and is it effective? Are we accomplishing the work that Jesus called us to do?

This week I learned that a member of our church has some very disturbing family issues. The issue is hush hush and few people know about it and no one is doing anything about it. I don't know what to do. I'm not supposed to know!

I am asking myself what would Jesus want me to do when a new book comes into the store on our autoship new release program from David C Cook. "The Twenty Piece Shuffle" by Greg Paul addresses the issue of taking off our "everything is just fine" masks, getting real and meeting the needs of those around us. Jesus cared passionately about the needs of the poor and downtrodden. To be honest I have not.

Also this week, Jerry Easterwood came and talked to our Sunday School Class about The Compassionate Care Clinic. Hmmm, what a coincidence--NOT.

I don't know what God is calling me to do, but I know I can't do it alone. If this message resonates with you, please comment.

3 comments:

  1. That Sallie GirlJuly 29, 2008 at 1:26 PM

    I thought this was a very good post because I really do love church. Its a place where all of my friends are, where we can socialize and be encouraging to one another... I have been raised in the church so I
    tend to not question how things are done and go along with it... but lately I have just been thinking about the way the church is, And have been talking to alot of people about how things are supposed to be. Or youth group is really at its highest point when we are at CIY and in a plcae that premotes opening up and sharing. The thing is, when we are not at a conference What are we really doing to reach out to people who are not already in the church? or maybe in the church but not opening up? how do we create in environment where people feel safe and loved. So basically I said all that just to say that I think it is VERY important for us to see the issues and do our best to grow in the church and not just to "go with the flow".

    -Sallie

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  2. In the words of my dear husband.."empathy stinks". It's so much easier to have sympathy for someone cause you don't have to actually do anything. I am praying for this family and for you to be able to do what you need to do to help.

    Paula

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  3. The sequel to “Pagan Christianity?” is out now. It’s called “Reimagining Church”. It picks up where “Pagan Christianity” left off and continues the conversation. (“Pagan Christianity” was never meant to be a stand alone book; it’s part one of the conversation.) “Reimagining Church” is endorsed by Leonard Sweet, Shane Claiborne, Alan Hirsch, and many others. You can read a sample chapter at
    http://www.ReimaginingChurch.org
    It’s also available on Amazon.com. Frank is also blogging now at http://www.frankviola.wordpress.com

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