In the message this past Sunday, we received a reminder that "I" am not the focus of what God is doing. That's a simple, but powerful message that we must be chewing on more often than we do.
Our church family is spending the next couple months at least, focusing specifically on Jesus being the focus/center. Looking at the characteristics and attributes of this Center, and His Father/Spirit. Especially in times of such a consumerist mindset in the Church, and found even in beautiful moments of salvation - we NEED this sort of re-orienting revival.
The moment where many of us "accepted Jesus in our hearts" may be a good place to start. Foundational to so much that has gone wrong in our pursuit of Jesus, is why and how this pursuit began. Churches and Pastors who held strongly to the motto of "get 'em to sign this paper", or "get 'em to come back next week"...assuming the rest would simply work itself out....has led us to churches filled with people completely willing to be a part of what God is doing - but who assume God simply wants to save them and others from hell.
Because that was never, isn't, and won't ever be the primary goal of what God is up to. Why was the blind man given sight again? So that he could SEE. Why was the lame man healed? So that he could WALK. Why was Lazarus raised from the grave? So that he could LIVE. Why was the early Church given the Spirit of God? So that they could BE HIS ACTIVE PRESENCE.
God's goal is not simply to make sure we don't end up apart from Him. God has brought you freedom from sins, offers redemption of what's happened in your past, NEW LIFE for you today, HIS SPIRIT to empower your living, and has begun making ALL THINGS NEW....
..SO THAT....(may our lives fill in this blank)
And may we be inviting others into such living. As we do this together, we are the Church. The bride of Christ. The disorientingly beautiful and infinitely loving force in a world being transformed as the Kingdom of God comes. May we be found there...
Church For The Unwelcomed
5 weeks ago