The Crisis of Faith at The Crossroad of Belief, Part 2


Hello again, and yes I have decided this topic is worthy of more space here.

My Pastor returning after a sabbatical yesterday preached a message of transformation… maybe even radical transformation. The funny, or not so funny part of this is, what he preached really wasn’t radical, at least I don’t think it was radical for those who read the bible and believe it to be true and———– want to follow it’s teaching. He spoke about separating ourselves from a mindset that we have adopted, one that I alluded to in part one of this post.

I think that we want it both ways, we want to be radically……..comfortable. You know a good job, a nice home, money in the bank, perfect children, loved and respected by our community and the picture perfect solution to every trial that pokes it’s ugly head at us. Of course we can go to the other extreme where we have no home, no family, no material possessions, no job, and we stand on a hillside clothed in sackcloth, preaching of the soon coming return of Jesus.

The answer I think lay somewhere between the two extremes and the answer is different for every single person. Unfortunately Christianity has become something different, and we, the so-called church are at the forefront of it’s perceived failures. Besides the obvious hypocrisy the world around us sees on a daily basis there are fundamental issues with the way our faith is portrayed. For one thing our continued desire to walk in individual freedom, (read, with little or no accountability) moving further and further away from a relationship based society, continues to erode our own natures. For another, our senses are bombarded daily in this hyper-materialistic world to the point where the line between need and want has pretty much disappeared.

Nothing is so simplistic I realize, and I certainly do not want to sit here and hypothesize on all the negative aspects of where we have failed as a Church.  What I do want to do is openly discuss how when I speak of these things, it isn’t with an accusatory finger, but rather with a heart that says I am broken and the people I know around me are broken and a willingness to work together in our mutual broken-ness toward a healthy reliance on Christ to mend and heal and build a body of believers who in Jesus’ words will be made perfect in our weakness.

This body I envision does not walk around condemning or pointing fingers of judgement but rather is willing to invoke self-discipline and a righteous accountability that desires to help and not hinder , one that looks for the good in others and is quick to examine it’s own faults and shortcomings, but slow to accuse others.

Is this a utopian view? Perhaps, is it likely that we will see this exhibited in its fullness, probably not the way we perceive it. Is it a worthy endeavor to travel this path, learning balance, appreciating diversity, and embracing a love that put’s the greater good above our own…. Absolutely!

JT

 

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About JT

I am a happily married man with 6 children and have an autoimmune disease. I hope to share my story and explore others' stories and perhaps together both of our lives will be enhanced.
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4 Responses to The Crisis of Faith at The Crossroad of Belief, Part 2

  1. To have anything today it seems that life demands that we work hard, and then we turn around and we play hard. We get in debt playing hard and then we run hard to keep up. You’re right. We do have a problem. It will take deliberate intention to cast off those shackles and know the “freedom” life you speak of. The freedom to focus on God. Good word, brother.

    • JT says:

      Thank you Don, shackles is a very good word here… a combination of our nature and an enemy astute at deception. It is war, let’s get our gear 🙂

  2. Paul Miller says:

    Well, I left a comment on part 1, but for whatever reason (I’ll blame it on Android) it didn’t post.
    Great post, this is where my mind has been at for a while. I gotta say, I love ‘radically comfortable’, that’s my new favorite expression. A few years ago I was told, ‘you are either moving toward, or away from God, never sitting still’, so we should be continually growing in our relationship with Him, praying for Him to increase our faith and our trust. I’ve learned to really trust Him in everything (read, more than I used to), that the more I try to take control often times the worse things get. I’ve really had to learn what it means to let go. Move forward in obedience, often failing, but always trying to trust that He’s in control. So I make plans, have dreams, but try not to hold on to them too tight. I like our house, my job etc. but it belongs to Him, I’m just to tend to it, use it in ways that honour Him.

    Judging others, this is huge for me, I’ve been a very judgmental person all my life. Recently I’ve seen the terrible damage this can cause. Romans 12 I believe; “think of yourselves with sober judgment”. Love like Christ, with mercy and grace. Think of others before ourselves. God tells us so, so much about how we are to view others and treat others. In the end, I decided I needed to stop looking at other Christians to see how I should be or I will become utterly lost, and look to Jesus, and there’s only one way to do that—read my bible.

    • JT says:

      Amen Paul, the bible reading I would say is the equivalent of a foundation without it we just aren’t going to hold up. Not because we are relying on our strength but because in the word is the ammunition against our enemies, the reminder of all God’s thoughts and promises towards us, and the gospel of love that overcomes and imbibes us with the hope of our future. Thanks for affirming I am not alone, my friend.

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