Thursday, January 10, 2008

would Jesus be accepted in your church?

I was listening to a song the other day and I was struck by one of the lines in it (can you tell that I listen to music a lot yet?). The song is called My Jesus and it's by Todd Agnew. The line was this one:

'Cause my Jesus would never be accepted in my church
The blood and dirt on His feet might stain the carpet

It got me thinking . . . is that true? Are we more concerned about something in our building getting dirty, than about welcoming people into the church?

I think sometimes, not always but sometimes, we get so caught up in how things look at church and in how we look at church, that we get forget about what is most important . . . the people. There is nothing wrong with wanting things to look nice . . . but when we get so caught up in that we have a problem.

Being raised in the church, I was raised with the idea of putting on your "Sunday best" to go to church each weekend. And when you got there every other family was the same. Is there anything inherently wrong with? No, not in my opinion . . . as long as we don't put this above the people who we are supposed to be showing the love of God to.

Or I've been in places where there is more concern about the building getting dirty than about reaching out to a hurting and lost community around them? This is wrong! As the church we are called to reach out to the world and welcome them.

When I think about it . . . I wonder, would Jesus actually come to one of our churches if He was on earth today? Yes, when He was on earth before He spent time in the synagogues and with the "religious" people of His day, but He also came down pretty hard on them for their hypocritical behaviour on more than one occassion. I think, if Jesus was on earth today, we would find Him with the lowest in our society . . . the poor and the homeless. Those are the people that I think Jesus would spend much of His time with.

And maybe, that's something we need to think about more. Church is good . . . and meeting with other believers is necessary. But, we can't ignore the poor, the homeless, those who are down on their luck . . . we need to reach out to them . . . and to those around us who may not know Christ yet. That should be our focus . . . not looking our best and keeping our churches neat and clean.


  1. Tamara.

    Great thoughts. I know the feelings of conviction that song brings –it's actually enough that there has been one time I turned the song off because of it. But it's true. We do worry so much about our appearance (our 'masks') that we ignore our responsibilities.

    The thing is, it's easy to point out what is wrong, but harder to come up with a solution and to implement it. I believe Willow Park is doing well in their efforts at Metro, but what about the rest of the people who claim the name of Christ, not only in Willow Park, but in all of Kelowna (or all of North America for that matter) who worry about being corrupted by the corruption of this world, and as a result ignore that which they are supposed to taking care of...

    I loved what Pastor Lawrence had to say last weekend (I was up in Kelowna), about how as salt in this world it's our responsibility to keep the meat (this world) from going rancid. Equally true is that it is our responsibility to bring light into the darkness of this world.

    The question is, and I don't really have much of an answer for this, is how do we? There has to be a solution! Any thoughts....?


  2. Oh and yes, He would, we have a painted concrete floor here in Keremeos, so the blood and dirt could be 'cleaned up.'

  3. Sean,
    I've been thinking about your question that you left at the end of your comment . . .
    I think we are honestly the best at being salt and light in our world when we are living the way that we are called to live in Scripture.
    Is this easy? No, because it requires us to live in a way is pretty counter cultural.
    Is this natural? No, because even though we are no longer bound to our sin nature it is still there and there is still a battle that happens when we want to do something good.
    I honestly think that if we were take seriously what Jesus says in response to the question of what the greatest commandment is in Matthew 22:37-39: "Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: 'Love your neighbour as yourself'." I really do believe that if we lived that out in the day-in and day-out of our lives on this earth, we would be salt and light to the world around us.
    We live in a world that lacks true love . . . the verb, the action, the choice that love is. And we lived out really love everyday of our lives, we would do a much better job of being the salt and light that our world desperately needs for us to be.