I heard an illustration by Craig Groeschel, which seriously inspired me. A couple of years ago, Craig wrote Confessions of a Pastor, where, with raw honesty and transparency, he talked about things he struggles with as a pastor, leader and husband. On stage he admitted that pornography was an area in his life which he struggled to maintain victory in. His honesty and transparency sparked a domino effect within his congregation. That week during a small group meeting a man in the meeting confessed that he battled with pornography as well. He figured that if a pastor could be open and honest then so could he. It just so happened that there was a guest/visitor in the group that night, a woman who was inspired by such a group of people that could be so honest and vulnerable with one another. She figured if their pastor could be honest, and this man in this group could be honest, so could she. That night, an unbeliever confessed to a group of Christians that she was a stripper and that she was unhappy with her life. That night that group of believers agreed to pay the woman's bills for the next couple of months so that she didn't have to strip anymore.
That story is not out of the Bible.
That story is not out of the book of Acts.
It didn't happen in Africa.
It happened in a normal church, with normal Christians.
As you come home from church this afternoon allow me to ask you a couple questions...
Is your church a community of people with whom you can be genuine, true, and honest?
Do you feel like you can truly be yourself with your church "family"?
Can you be vulnerable in your relationships with the people whom you share your faith?
When is the last time your community of fellow Christians truly changed someone's life?
I hope you had a great time singing, praying, and hearing the God's word this morning. But nothing we do inside a church building on Sunday scares Satan or shakes hell. Actually being the Church outside in the world Monday through Sunday is what matters. If we would start to live like Jesus, really live the lifestyle of Jesus, in a radical way, then hell would be afraid. Because if we, the Church, started actually living like Jesus, WE WOULD CHANGE THE WORLD! WE ARE THE ONLY PEOPLE WITH THE POWER TO CHANGE THE WORLD!
How is it that tax collectors, prostitutes, and sinners were drawn to Jesus? Why did Jesus have the power to change their lives...and we don't? Why does the world only feel judged by us and not loved? Why do we feel judged by each other and not loved? Didn't Christ give us the power to do what He did? Why do we settle for less?
Maybe I'm making it too simple. Or maybe it just is this simple. If a rabbi and some fishermen could change the world, so can we. Let's get on with it!
Thanks for reading...now GO DO SOMETHING ABOUT IT...