Just like 2000 years ago much of His Church languishes in religious perfunctory and humanistic performance. Many AWOL members will make their first visits to our buildings as if it was their yearly pilgrimage to Mecca.
They will come in search of God’s favor for the rest of the year but their hearts are really far from Him. Others driven by the current economic affairs will attend searching for hope and peace but what will they find? Will they find love?
Matt 24:12 And because lawlessness will abound, the love of many will grow cold.
The truth is we seek His blessings but not His way. Our Lord said to the old Jerusalem words that ring true even today;
Matt 23:37-39 “O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, the one who kills the prophets and stones those who are sent to her! How often I wanted to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, but you were not willing! 38 See! Your house is left to you desolate; 39 for I say to you, you shall see Me no more till you say, ‘Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord!’”
Oh yes, we will jump up and make a big to do in worship and praise on Palm Sunday. Maybe even do a couple of holy laps inside the building but we will not cross the street to share the goodness of God with our neighbors. Remember, it was the very worshippers who took of their robes and laid them before him at His triumphant entry that would later turn on our Lord and cry out “Crucify Him, Crucify Him”.
We all know the problem but what is the solution? It begins with leadership. We must fight off the religious pressures of this world and people’s desire to be entertained. We must make our assemblies open to the leading of His Spirit and if we showcase anything let it be the love we have for one another.
Let us put aside the dramas, skits, elaborate musical shows and pageantry that draw attention away from the simplicity of Christ. I know it is what the people expect but what if we pattern our services around the “Audience of One” as they should be instead of catering to the entertainment desires and the prideful spirits of the people.
Here is a question. What would your Easter Sunday look like if you paid no one?
Yes, your future as a leader is on the line and you may find yourself without sufficient funds to pay all those expensive buildings and staff or worse you may end up in the street. The question is who would you rather face, fickle people today or the face of your Master on that Day? The ugly truth is that for many the costs are too high and the commitment is too week.
I speak to those that have an ear to hear and a heart to pray. What will you do different this week? What Christianity will you model before your family and before a sin-racked world? Will you only pray and worship “in Church” or will you worship and adore Him 24/7?
May the Lord who is Head of his Church bless and confirm those things that please Him and may the high flying circus acts and spiritual gymnasiums be exposed by His absence.
What have I to gain for saying these things? Probably nothing more but continued rejection, scorn and nashing of teeth but if just one brother or sister rethinks their worship to the One who gave His all for them and me then it will all be worth it.
John 12:24 Most assuredly, I say to you, unless a grain of wheat falls into the ground and dies, it remains alone; but if it dies, it produces much grain. 25 He who loves his life will lose it, and he who hates his life in this world will keep it for eternal life. 26 If anyone serves Me, let him follow Me; and where I am, there My servant will be also. If anyone serves Me, him My Father will honor. NKJV
Jose L. Bosque
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