Back in centuries gone by, one thing the church worried about when it sent its missionaries among native peoples was that the missionaries would so identify with the native culture, challenges, and peoples that they would forget the Gospel and the cultures from which they came.
What if that is exactly what is happening to the church itself in the 21st century (at least the North American Church by and large).
Can we tell the difference, outside of our houses of worship, if someone even believes in God or not?
How often does God enter into our conversations? I don’t mean by this the concept of God, what God has done in the past, or what God will do in the future (a removed and more academic, philosophical, or historical question). But rather, how often do we talk about God as One who is with us in the present?
We were created for more, to believe in more, and to be more. If we are indistinguishable from the culture at large, unchanged in any real way from those who never decide to be God’s people, have we forgotten who we really are?
There is a river moving fast through our culture which says that:
~ We are here by chance. No one is looking out for you but you.
~ Having as much “stuff” as you want and protecting your “stuff” is the core of freedom. Survival of the fittest is really true (if we have stuff, we deserve our stuff, and others clearly don’t)
~ Beware of others, really fear them (they want your stuff!)
~ Protecting your “stuff” and having total freedom to do with your “stuff” what you choose is the most important issue around
It is not what God taught. It is not what the Bible says. It is not what Jesus stood for, died for, and rose for. But we are drinking it down, not just in our culture but in so many churches, by the gallon.
It is time for us all to re-evaluate what it means that there is a God. A God who made us, a God who created us for eternity, a God who called us to love him with all our hearts and souls (and others as ourselves), and a God who calls on us to store up treasure which will never degrade.
Our culture has been changing the church of late far more than the church has been changing culture.
Let’s remember where our real native land is.
Until next time,