When your house is on fire the last thing you should be concerned with is teaching others how to make shadow puppets. Given any circumstance or situation there are appropriate reactions, then there are inappropriate reactions.
This morning as I was making coffee, my wife turned on the television to check the weather and see if we would have to take a class on making igloos and ice sculptures, only to be met by the smiling face of a man made famous by writing one of the most uninspired pieces of pseudo Christian pabulum in recent history, The Purpose Driven Life.
Given the current condition of the church, and the undeniable fact that most professing Christians seem to be in a deep, deep slumber, and given that this man is a self-described pastor, one would have expected a call to repentance, a call to the old path, or an insistence upon spiritual wakefulness, but why speak on any of those things when you could be peddling a new diet book?
The house is burning, and we’re teaching people how to make shadow puppets. The church has become a spineless, ineffectual, duplicitous, and inert static mass, and what we deem appropriate and even immediate, is to use the platform of a national audience to try and sell a book which will inevitably tell you to visit the local buffet a little less, and move around a little more.
Take it from a guy who’s probably lost and gained close to a thousand pounds in his thirty-eight years on this rock, there is no secret to losing weight, there is no magic potion, or mysterious algorithm. Three quarters of your success will depend upon your diet, and the other quarter upon whether or not you are getting enough exercise. Eat less of the wrong foods – breads, pasta, cakes, cookies, fried foods – essentially everything that tastes really good, more of the right foods – lean chicken, broccoli, spinach, nuts – watch your calorie intake, do it consistently, and voila, you are now a diet guru. There you go. You are welcome. I just saved you some money.
Given the current spiritual climate, there are only a handful of appropriate responses, especially when it concerns the leaders, or the spiritual authorities of our time. For many, the only appropriate response is mourning, and weeping, and repenting in sackcloth and ash for having led the people of God astray, and having taught a fraudulent, powerless gospel subservient to the flesh for so many years.
For the handful who have kept to the truth, their response will inevitably be standing in the gap, and weeping between the porch and the altar for the sheep of God’s pasture, that they might open their eyes and see the world lukewarm hearts have created in all its grizzly horror.
Is this really the right time to be peddling a new diet plan? Is it really the appropriate reaction to all that ails the household of faith?
Let’s not pretend a donkey is a zebra. It is intellectually dishonest, and what’s worse we are making light of the seriousness of the peril the church finds itself in.
The only way trying to sell a new diet book while the church is coming apart and being decimated from without as well as from within can be deemed appropriate is if money is your god, and not the God of the Bible.
Is this all the church has become? Are we simply a large pool of consumers to which unscrupulous souls can market Christmas albums, diet books, and family friendly movies? If this is all we are, then I weep openly, for what we were meant to be is so much more glorious, profound, and impacting.
Although men often react inappropriately, God’s reactions are always, without fail, appropriate. Seeing as God’s reactions are always appropriate, I fear this coming year will be one of great shaking for what we perceive to be the household of faith, and the separation which has been long in coming will finally commence.
I don’t mean to be a downer so close to the beginning of a new year, but circumstances dictate I must. One question remains, one with a profound and lasting impact on each of us as individuals. Knowing that the shaking is coming, knowing that the separation will begin, are we certain, beyond doubt that we are among the wheat and not among the tares?
With love in Christ,
Michael Boldea Jr.