Monday, October 08, 2007

...broken couches


(from my notes for Sunday's message)
DOMESTICATE:
2. to tame
5. to take (something foreign, unfamiliar, etc.) for one's own use or purposes; adopt.
6. to make more ordinary, familiar, acceptable, or the like


My prayer/goal/etc. is not for a domesticated youth ministry/church/view of God. It is tempting sometimes, though. If we had free pizza, giveaways, big bands, and new games every week…we could grow like crazy. Sing some really catchy rock songs with Jesus in them, buy brand new cushy couches and start a snack shop with wireless internet…..shoot. We’d have teens coming out of our ears. We may have some of these elements over the years, but these will not be our focus.

10 years from now, we may still have one or two of the couches that are downstairs right now. We might still be excited about somebody actually bringing a snack to Sunday School, and I’ll bring the juice. We may have around the same number of teenagers as we have right now. Who knows what the seasons/years of ministry will bring us here? But one thing we do know…God will be the center. God will have control. God will be transforming lives, just as he is right now in our church family.

So what does that look like? In our youth ministry? In our personal lives? In Moundford Free Methodist? In the CHURCH?

What does a FREE, DANGEROUS, INCREDIBLE, UNTAMED, WILD God look like?

1 Kings 18:30-39 – READ FROM NRSV

God CONSUMED the altar that was a place set aside for His presence. Earlier in this chapter it would seem the conditions were perfect….the prophets of Ba’al were doing everything they knew to do in ceremony. Someone watching from the outside might think they had a very successful “ministry”. But nothing happened. But here, even when the conditions were imperfect, being completely drenched with water, because Elijah called on the one true God Himself, genuinely expecting God to show up….He did.

We may have broken couches in our youth ministry. We may have lives where things go wrong all the time. We may make mistakes on a Sunday or Wednesday that remind us that even those on stage are human. We may have messed up as God’s people through the years. There may be a lot of water on the altar…

But Church….if we call upon God…this wild and untamed God. If we call on His name to act in our ministries, in our lives, and in our Church….He WILL show up. And he will consume every inch that we have set aside for Him. And the only response anyone will have is the same as verse 39 – The LORD INDEED IS GOD.

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