Doing Life Together
I was really challenged this week in listening to this sermon by Darrin Patrick on what it means to be a true church of God following the example of the church in Acts 2 the-practices-of-a-missional-church. It wasnt about a once a week one hour sermon where someone talk and we all listen. No. It was about being relational and intentional about spending time with our Creator and spending time with each other. Throughout his whole sermon, Darrin Patrick Kept his focus on one specific passage, Acts 2:42-47. It was Peter speaking about the 3,000 that had joined their numbers. They were doing LIFE together, not just church on Sunday’s but communing and fellowship and walk this walk of life together. Darrin emphasized this unity that our churches should long to have it. That it wasn’t a “once a week church” it was a “day-by-day” church.
“As often as you do it do it in remembrance of me.” This verse I’m sure meant more than once a week, and more than once a month, but often. Often we should come to the Lord and thank Him for giving His LIFE, His SON, so that we may share in an intimate relationship with him. The Lord is calling for us to live life together with him and with each other but instead we walk around carrying our own burdens and struggles saying to everyone we are fine and then the church is dying 3,000 a year because we cannot just give it all up to God. Acts 2 gave us the perfect most clear definition of what God has called us to do as leaders. We don’t need to read all of the self-help books and learn how to be a better “Christian” or “pastor”. We need to be reading the Bible because it is in that book that we will find the guidance and direction we need to live a joyful life for him and a purposeful life for His kingdom.
I was personally so immersed into his message. He really talked about the way the church is failing and how we are not creating true disciples of Jesus. We do these alter calls week by week and expect people to have the radical transformation and then in three minutes during the chorus of a hymn come forward and choose to give their whole life up to God, claiming He is the one true King and that they will follow him. That is a lot of pressure. Change takes time and we don’t give that to them.
It has made me see that I need to be more intentional and be more about the quality than the quantity. The angels rejoice if even just one comes to the Lord, so why not create true disciples rather than just more “Christians”? I have been going on mission trips to Africa and we preach the gospel to those in the neighborhood around the school we are working in. Though the Kenyans of the organization come around the new believers and plug them into a church and check on them I feel a heavy nurden that I am not doing enough. We ask them to give up everything and follow Him but what am I giving up? Two weeks in Africa sounds more like gaining than getting. Maybe I need to be getting on a plane and staying on the ground in Kenya doing life with these woman and children so that they may know Christ.
Or on the other spectrum maybe I need to stop getting on planes and stay here and have intentional relationships with my friends and church creating community of believers so that new believers may see us through our actions and not our words feeling included in our lives and not an outcast.
The choice is our though. Be a status quo church that preaches one sided sermons to chrisitians or just to non believers and then go on with our weeks never looking back? Or are we going to be the Acts 2 body of Christ, doing life with one another. Selling all we have to help the poor and taking communion together more than just one or twice a month. I personally wish to be the later. Being dangerous for his Kingdom and making His name known in an intentional personal way to His children.