Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Stop Doing Church...Be The Church

I have been burdened lately with the idea that so many people are so content with just doing church that they forget that we have been called to be the church. It's hard to get people to serve, tithe, or participate in anything church related that will make them break out of their "I am a Christian on Sunday" routine. There are so many lost people in this world and if we don't take the Gospel to them, we are failing at the Great Commission.

Last week, I read a blog from Pastor Shaun King who announced that he was stepping down as senior pastor of Courageous Church, the church he planted just 3 years ago. There is no sex scandal or mismanagment of funds that caused him to make this decision. It was the fact that he was passionate about his church being doers of the Word of God and the majority of his congregation was content just hearing about it. He could give the most passionate message about doing outreaches in the community, donating money and resources to Haiti or focus on ending child sex trafficking right here in the city. Yet, when it came time to put action behind the newly stirred up hearts, the people didn't budge. They didn't show up for outreaches, they didn't donate to worthy causes, they didn't follow his vision to shift his church model to focus less on a Sunday service and more focus on being the hands and feet of Jesus in the community.

I am sure it was beyond heartbreaking for him to know that the very church he planted aptly named Courageous Church was more content on just doing a routine church service than actually being the church. I have followed Pastor Shaun and his efforts for change for a couple of years now so I can speak with confidence that this man has a heart for God and a heart for change on this Earth. It still baffles me how people, even at my own church, are just content sitting back while everyone else does the work of Christ. My pastor talked about the serving grace of God this past Sunday. He stressed that we should all have a heart to serve in the body of Christ as well as for the things that break the heart of God. Luke 22:27 says "Who is more important, the one who sits at the table or the one who serves? The one who sits at the table, of course. But not here! For I am among you as one who serves." If Jesus saw Himself as a servant, surely those of us that follow Him should have a heart to serve as well.

I feel rather lucky to belong to a church where 70% of our 10,000 member congregation serves faithfully. Whenever we have community wide outreaches, people donate time, money and resources faithfully. Whenever there is a need, our congregation steps up. When the floods in TN happened, our Fusion ministry had young adults there days later to help with clean up. We sent numerous teams to Haiti after the earthquake. We do community clean ups, furniture and clothing drives for the Clarkston refugees, Fusion on Tour, Sunday to Sunday, countless ministries that go into the community to serve, etc. We have accepted the call to do the works of Christ and to stand behind the vision of our church leaders when it comes to spreading the love of Christ community and world wide.

I am certain that Pastor Shaun and his family will continue to be change makers in the community and the world. Though the Courageous Church will revert back to their regular Sunday services, I pray that the seeds that Pastor Shaun has planted over the past 3 years will start to break through the soil of contentment. I pray that my own church home continues to press forward to shake off lukewarmness and embrace the call to serve.

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