It’s been over a month since I wrote something here. I didn’t do it on purpose or set out to “take a break from blogging
”. I guess it just happened.
These last few weeks I’ve been observing. Observing this “Christian
” thing. Observing how we do
church with, I guess you can say, a new set of eyes and open ears.
I’ve been re-reading Francis Chan’s book, Crazy Love. It is a definite must read.
A couple of things written had hit my Spirit and challenged the very core of my heart:
“I quickly found that the American church is a difficult place to fit in if you want to live out New Testament Christianity. The goals of American Christianity are often a nice marriage, children who don't swear, and good church attendance. Taking the words of Christ literally, and seriously, is rarely considered. That's for the 'radicals' who are 'unbalanced' and who go 'overboard.' Most of us want a balanced life we can control, that is safe, and that does not involve suffering.”
“Our view of the Holy Spirit is too small. The Holy Spirit is the One who changes the church, but we have to remember that the Holy Spirit lives in us. It is individual people living Spirit-filled lives that will change the church.”
The church has been on my heart lately. It’s as though an awe, a reverence if you will, has been burdening my heart.
Do you ever wonder if God looks down at the church on Sunday mornings and wonders why we have put Him in a box?
Why we sing 2.5 songs? You know the routine 2 fast, 1 slow, all to stay within the timeline of getting the congregation out for lunch, when God says "I don’t remember a schedule, I remember a suddenly (Acts 2:2)."
I don’t want to talk about denominations or get into a conversation that divides us.
I think... [Tweet "God just wants the simplicity of what He designed the church to be."]
When we decide, what Chan said, to allow the Holy Spirit to change the church through us, is when we begin to unify as one body, one accord. And when this happens, God will change the atmosphere of the house, the atmosphere of our church, our home.
I remember a day when we invited the Holy Spirit into those places.
Remember the Holy Spirit isn’t an IT. He is the third person of the Trinity (1 John 5:7).
We have created a place where Jesus is the One that sits with us at Starbucks or in the hospital, but really we are in the dispensation of the Holy Spirit (John 14:16).
Jesus is at the right hand of the Father (Acts 2:33), but the Holy Spirit is the One that wants to walk in the door of your house, sit at the foot of the bed in your hospital room, ride in the car with you.
And when He is in the room with you, He will remove burdens and destroy yokes, He will heal your body, bring peace to your mind, He will be an unspeakable joy in your life.
We must not forget, yes, He was not Word made flesh, Jesus was (John 1:14). The Holy Spirit is the Spirit of the Living God (2 Corinthians 3:17-18).
I know a lot of people don’t talk about this or for some of you reading this it may seem crazy, but I love what Chan said recently in a Keynote at CLA (Christian Leadership Alliance) :
He’s (Tozer) talking about the angels in heaven. You know how in Revelation 4 it describes the angels around the throne of God and screaming Holy, Holy, Holy, and talks about the big pillars of fire and sea of glass. Tozer than asking (in The Knowledge of the Holy), “What if one of these Holy Ones, one of these Angels, who spent his glad centuries by the sea of fire would come to earth? How meaningless to Him would be the ceaseless chatter of the busy tribes of men, how strange and empty would sound a flat, stale, and prophet-less words heard in the average pulpit from week to week.”
Chan – “What if one of those beings did come in? What if he is observing us after being in the presence of God? What would he think of my words coming out of my mouth - asking, “What are you doing up there?”
To listen to the rest of Chan’s talk, click here. You don’t want to miss his explanation of the clock!
We are not serving a wind, a breath. We are serving, in Him, a Holy Spirit, the One that comforts us, lifts us up, makes a way where there seems to be no way.
God never determined His church to be a place of religious rhetoric.
He never determined the church to be a place of lifeless worship.
He never determined the church to be a place where we get bored or ask ourselves how quick can I get out of here.
He intended the church to be a life-transforming, body-healing, soul-saving, Spirit-filling, mind-changing church that seeks after His presence.
He intended the church to be something that was a transformation out of the old man into the new. But, instead what we are doing is constantly messing with God’s DNA.
The cynics say we don’t need that “Holy Spirit thing” anymore.
Yeah, we don’t need people on the brink of suicide being prayed for and being set free so they can live out their destiny.
We don’t need people that have cancer, dying and the doctors are giving them no hope.
We don’t need to pray for cancer victims, we don’t need to pray for the oppressed, we don’t need to praise God until the glory comes.
We don’t need to preach the Truth because the Truth is offensive to the culture.
We don’t need to be the church anymore.
We need to be surgically altered, yet somewhat close, but not really what it was designed to be.
No... [Tweet "We need to be the church that once again finds it way back to Acts 2."]
What was birthed was not a lifeless, powerless gathering of people.
What was birthed was a Supernatural being that would transform the world around them.
We need the church to resurrect from the DNA God intended it to be.
Let the church get back to what God created it to be.
We, Christians, challenge you because we are the Church.