Thursday, October 19, 2006

This needs preached...

My life calling has been the same for a long time, but it seems to be adjusting a bit. Really, it's the same, just I am expressing it with different words. For a long, long time I have lived like this:

When I die, I hope teenagers cry.

You might think that's morbid, if so, google the James is wierd club to meet people just like you. For the rest of us it makes sense that if a person invests his life in teens consistently they will cry at your funeral. It reminds me that I want to influence teens for my whole life.

Somehow I need to add:

Break the numb.

I really think that the western world (wealthy) is numb to much of the kingdom of God - and it seems to be the prophetic job of 'pastors' to break through this and help people see the kingdom here and coming.

Along that line, I need to preach sometime about how we have taken the statement about being in the world, but not of the world and changed it into being like the world but not as bad as the world. For evidence, look at contemporarty christian music, the christian publishing industry, coffee shops in churches, silly slogans on signs, the way church leaders dress, christian celebrities, church buildings, democratic church leadership, etc. The negative effect of this is an isolationism and elitism that is causing many people to no longer look at Christians as lovers of all - instead they think we love their stuff, ideas, and anything else we can copy; yet we can do without those heathens who negatively influence our market share.

break the numb.


AllieB said...

I'm confused James. I was with you with "break the numb." A great prayer that I could pray more, Lord, break my numb. I was with you with the idea that we have watered down what Jesus says so that we strive to not be as bad as the world, rather than to not be OF it. But...some of what the church does, perhaps the coffee shop thing is a good example, couldn't that be part of being all things to all people like Paul said? Sure it's an imitation, but not an immoral one that causes us to compromise the gospel, eh? And I liked your red shirt and black tie, are you dissing the way you dress now? ;-)

Are you saying that we Christians are becoming isolationists at the very same time that we are trying so hard to imitate the world? Or that the world desires to isolate itself from us as it sees no difference between us and them. Either one is a problem. But I agree, materialism is hurting the western church to the point that we refuse to choose between God and our stuff cuz deep inside we might be afraid of what we would choose.

James said...

For me, it what we do shows what we really believe. The motivation behind each act that produces a Christian ghetto may be even worse than the isolationism.

I have a good friend who is a new believer after a long and hard life of sin - who wears Christian tees all the time because it is so wild and amazing and new to them - that motivation is cool with me.

SAFETY (the family-friendly alternative...)is not a motivation that Christ would promote.