Saturday, November 29, 2008

Saddened, Not Surprised

I came across this blog:

Letters From Leavers

As in, letters from people who have left the church.

Sure, there's a bit of "I didn't get my way"-ism on this site, but, for the most part, the issues that the writers have are the flaws in the church that have frustrated me since I began in full-time ministry. Sadly, many of the writers have also left God, to which I say this: His followers are not Him. Idiots though we may be, we are not always great representatives of our Lord. This begs the question of God's existence for some, which makes sense. After all, if His people can't really get it together, is He really around?

The problem is that pastors and church leaders dismiss those questions out of hand. We shouldn't. Nor should we be confrontational or be "faith mechanics" and try to "fix" it. We should do what this ex-church (and ex-Christian) person suggests, and actually listen.

For me, the matter of confusion is simple: why can't the church just be the church? Why does it seem to be so hard? As I scanned the letters, I saw people talking about behavior that was like a church in a mash up with a Junior high school: cliques, back biting, power and popularity posturing, and integrity and compassion issues. I'm increasingly discouraged by the state of the church as it worms its way around explicit instruction from Jesus on how to treat each other. There always seems to be an excuse for why we don't have to do what Jesus said. Is that really something that you or I want to stay on board with? Should we be somewhat scared that this is not what walking the narrow path looks like?


summar ann said...

its really hard to be the church when no one else around you is willing to be the church also.

Anonymous said...

I believe a lot of people have forgotten what Church really is and what is all about. Church is a group of people gathering together worshiping the Lord.
I guess a lot of people have translated that into a place to meet people, click with some, leave others behind, and more. Those same people who have forgotten what Church is all about are people who are only thinking of themselves when in reality, it should be about Jesus, and Praising God.
Very very sad...


weezer said...

David Mullen " revival"check that out!
Wow ! I just came across this and , have gone thru the frustration that happens when you are focusing on the, (how do you say this)Ideal ie.. what we start to see as what ought to be, and what we see as the current sad state of affairs, I was in a group for awhile that espoused not having anything to do with the religious system, which in their eyes was the great whore Babylon, because it does not do what the bible tells us we should do, but in time I saw that indeed neither were they walking in love, so now I try to just walk in the light or be the light I wish were there, and it is a challenge to not be the man I say I despise!( that was in a song by David Mullen " revival" that is a great tape/cd I forget which song it was but that was the cd) It was easier before I was married and had kids and got a job that required much of my time. so now I have more grace towards others, but that still dont let us off the hook, and we need to encourage each other to get together more and eat together or hang out and pray together for each other and others ..sorry for the rambling..but dont give up on others and if I am getting that way , please confront me in love bro. you have my permission.. see ya!