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Monday, April 07, 2008

Spiritually Obese

In Africa, I couldn't even think about myself. Others were on my mind at all times, whether it was a small child, single mom, teammate or missionary leader. I had very little time to sit down and read the word, listen to praise and worship, or rest. The day i returned my flesh must have been ready to return from vacation or something, because all of a sudden i was starting focusing on myself and what i needed. my emotions were out of wack, and all i could think of was i needed time, i needed to be alone, i didn't want to talk to anyone. i didn't want to serve at church, i just wanted to make sure i could get fed in the way i thought i needed (by sleeping in on Sunday and showing up for church to HEAR the message). Good thing i have a selfless husband to keep me in check. He didn't let us do that. As tired as he was too, as drained and emotionally unstable he was, he refused to let us just show up for church. of course i was angry and thought he was being too hardcore, but i followed and did as he said.
the second we walk in to serve in our specific ministries (usher for gary, and guest services for me) he gets a phone call. his boss wanted to come to church! gary has waited 3 years for this man to show up. we couldn't believe it.
we told our leaders we would be sitting in the message and wouldn't be there to serve....ironic...but that's the difference between me making sure i get what i need and God making sure....
we had a guest speaker, Pastor Paul Scanlon from the UK. Mind you, the UK has only 2% OF CHURCHED PEOPLE. That means there is 98% of people who are athiest or refuse to go to church. He spoke on how IRRELEVANT our church is...not Jesus, but the church. Half of the things churches get caught up into don't matter to Jesus. Anyways, i want to encourage you to listen to his message on our church website (www.celebration.org and go to messages for 4.6.08) We are irrelevant because we are only worried about our blessing instead of using our blessings to bless others. We are so spiritually obese that we are literally staving others around us. We go to them with our RELIGIOUS lingo and they are like, "WHAT? HOW DOES prophesy or tongues help me!!? I am a single mom with a kid on drugs!!!" so we don't reach them and they continue to struggle without support. He said when he brought this concern to his church (of 600, which is huge for the UK, it's a mega church basically) people were up in arms. they liked their traditions and "clicks". some of the main prayer warriors for praying for the lost, were the ones who refused to go out to the street corners and talk to prostitutes or homeless or hurting. IRONIC.
so praise god, after the message Gary's boss and his wife went right to orientation and became members. we went out to lunch and discussed "religion" vs. "relationship" for about 2 hours.
i'm going to close with this comment by Pastor Scanlon....
"Prayer is just an excuse "Christians" use when they are too lazy to go out and do anything" i love England's culture, very black and white.
How spiritually obese are you?

1 comments:

Gail said...

I have talked to so many people that truly needed that message on Sunday from Pastor Scanlon. What a humbling message. And it was soooo true! I definitely prayed that day...God show me where to act!