Is Your Church A Country Club?
I have been brainstorming ideas for an upcoming ladies event in New Hampshire where I was asked to speak.
A few weeks ago, I was discussing this with a friend, and asking her advice. I asked what she felt was the most pressing need for Conservative Christian women today.
Her answer: Reach out to the unsaved community.
She said that if she had to do it over again, she would have gone to library reading groups, MOPS groups and the playground strategically, instead of spending her days mainly with church women.
Turns out, this is exactly the topic that I was ASKED to speak on by the ladies ministry coordinator. Amazing how God works, huh? Seems like this is the topic on everyones minds lately, because it’s come up a lot lately and I’ve been asked to cover the topic several times now.
Somehow, Conservative women are NOT known for their involvement in the community. How do we expect to be salt and light when we are hidden away in our own little worlds?
And as much as “church” is a great place to be, our friendships must reach past the church walls. This seems like a no-brainer, but somehow it is not.
Christians should never let the church become their Country Club. You know the mindset. The old WE don’t associate with THEM kind of exclusivity. We only associate with others who believe as we do…and for heaven’s sake, MY kids will certainly not be playing with YOUR kids if you disagree with ME. (pride, pride, pride.)
Churches should be a refueling center. Command central, if you will, where we hear the teaching of Christ, so that we can go out and do something with it. It should be the place where we worship, fellowship and reconnect with those who are in the same battle we are in.
AND THEN WE MUST GO OUT.
Here is where many of us fail. We adopt the “non-contamination” mindset which is anti-biblical. We are told to be in the world, but not of the world. And you cannot be involved if you don’t —–> go in. But, we don’t really want to deal with the messy lives of others, thank you very much.
When you realize what you have been saved FROM…
And that but for the grace of God, there I also go…
You quickly get off your high horse,
And mount one that is swift to share the good news with those who could also benefit as we did.
Imagine telling Christ how your week was spent.
- Well, Lord, I had lots of fellowship with other like-minded believers. At church, in my home, on Facebook…
- And…I read my bible and prayed…a lot.
- And, I even prayed for some unsaved family. (bonus!)
And perhaps He might ask,
But what about those around you who are dying and going to hell? Did you tell them that that was not necessary? Did you tell them that I died for them so they could come to me? Why did you play in your back yard and ignore your neighbors? You are my ambassador, but you really don’t have too much to say for me.
IF we really believed that the gospel is what it is… and
IF we really believed that Jesus Christ is who He claimed to be, and
If we really loved others the way that we were loved…
How might our lives look different?
Conservative Christian women are known for many things.
Unfortunately, in many cases, LOVE is not one of those things.
And although I am thankful for the many loving Christian women that have been great examples to me over the years (like my own mother and mother in law) I am saddened by the lack of love displayed to “strangers” in the name of separation.
- When you meet someone on the street and do not greet them, how dwelleth the love of God in you?
- When you are rude to the cashier, how dwelleth the love of God in you?
- When you make distainful comments about someone’s problems, how dwelleth the love of God in you?
- When you look down your self-righteous nose at someone else’s “stage” in Christian growth, how dwelleth the love of God in you?
Jesus said, “Follow me, and I will make you fishers of men.”——->It is hard when you have young children. I get that. But we need to be creative. We cannot be silent with good news like this.
And we cannot expect the “fish” to jump into the boat. Even in 2012 we must be fishers of men.
What creative ways have you found to reach out in love to your neighbors?