excitement rolled up with every hill
Anticipation filled me as I made my way through the countryside of Georgia. I was heading toward the place where I fell in love with the calling on my life, the home offices of Adventures in Missions.
My flight was hours away, and to pass the time I wanted to hang with the leadership and join them as they worshipped. Surprised faces greeted me and warm hugs enveloped me. I have lovingly called this place the “mothership” before, because I feel so at home in a place where the very atmosphere is expectant. I feel at home at a place where discipleship is part of the workday. In this place, my weirdness is not uncommon and my gifts are welcome.
I talked to people about what God was doing in their lives, and the fruit He was growing and cultivating through their creative pursuits. Writers and photographers shared their hearts and their work with me, and in between there were tears and laughter. I met young women who sat around a table with one another sharing their hearts as one of the most prophetic men I knew listened and encouraged them to dig deeper into the truth they were on the edge of discovering. I, along with everyone else there, prayed for a man about to leave for Haiti in November. We covered, launched, and spiritually warred for him all in that prayer.
On the porch, as I read a little, a fellow I got to know at camp back in April stopped by to talk. I shared why I was in Georgia in the first place, and some of what God had done since I saw Him last. I ended up preaching a bit. It happens more than you think.
Every moment, even the one lying in a hammock, was rejuvenating to my heart.
church or community
This is what the body of Christ should look like. All the time. We should all have a community of people around us that encourages us, strengthens us, disciples us and challenges us. We should have a place that feels more homey than churchy and we should be able to grow in both our spiritual lives and our creative ones in the church.
So often though, this is lacking.
In general the church has become a prelude to Sunday lunch. While we wade through the song service and wait on the preacher to get through his three bulleted points we miss out on pressing into worship, on ministering to one another and on listening and waiting on what God has for us.
In the early church, ministry (which just means service) would go on all day. Crowds followed Jesus without the expectation of a meal. The loaves and the fish were the bonus. Besides, I believe that miracle was less for the crowd, and more of a lesson for the disciples. They needed to realize that ministry shouldn’t stop just because the clock says, or lunch time hits, or because they had grown tired. They needed to know that there is a part to play in the move of God. (Tweet That)
When we give more weight to the lesser things, like convenience and lunch, what are we giving up instead? What if we took the extra fifteen minutes in the service and just waited on God?
God is on the move in the lives of men and women around the world. What are we missing out on because we had to hurry and get through the service without allowing any time for real ministry?
This is not about bashing the church. I love the body of Christ. I am in the body of Christ. This is a call to better. This is a call to deeper. (Psalms 42:7-8) God is waiting to pour out His Spirit. Are we ready to receive it?
Is there anything you are hungry for in the church? Leave your thoughts and feel free to share the picture from this post on your social media pages.
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