Wednesday, June 01, 2011

Ministering under the influence

I am reading D. Kevin Brown’s new book, Rite of Passage, and one thing that leaped out to me as I read is that he ministers in the church he grew up in. He is not a stranger ministering to strangers, he knows these people because he has been in this local church his entire life! That is such a huge difference from the normal cycle of getting a hired gun to parachute into a body of people he doesn’t know to minister to them. Dr. Black linked to something Kevin wrote and I liked it a lot. The post is titled It’s Time to Stop Talking… and I think Kevin is on to something here.

Anyway, Kevin is a little fired up about our attitudes toward the church. He sez…..

Many Christians today simply want to “pay” someone else to be a Christian for them. They want to go to work and make money, save for college and retirement and have vacations and see their kids and grandkids make good grades and root on their favorite teams on the weekend and then give the Lord a couple of hours on Sunday and be done with it. We’ve compartmentalized our Christianity to the box of Sunday’s and a box called a building and we do little during the week to show that we’ve been equipped to do anything except to complain about how long the message was in the box, how hot or cold the box was and why the box needs to be bigger or the box needs to get paid off so we can build another box, while people outside the box are dying and going to Hell.
Wow. That sounds like what a lot of people are starting to think. Kevin then talks about a community outreach that his church put on and here is the kicker: they did it without him! He wasn’t even in town! How many churches would run something like this without their pastor and how many pastors would trust their people to do something like this without being there? When churches can’t function without their pastor and pastors don’t equip or trust the people to minister without supervision we end up with what I keep talking about: overburdened and burned out pastors and an apathetic and disengaged “laity”. The work of ministry is far too vast and diverse to be relegated to a tiny subset of the church.

Check out Kevin’s post. As frustrated as I get with the church sometimes, I also am so encouraged to read about Christians getting “outside of the box” and taking Christ to those who need Him.

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