Posted by: pastordarren | October 7, 2008

God’s Chosen People

The surveys show it, the experts talk about it, and the attendance proves it – people are not as committed to the church as they were in the past.  We talk about the need for people to fill the seats and the positions on the board; to be a part of the education ministry and the small groups; to participate in the activities and programs that are apart of church life.  But what are we being committed to?  As I look around the church (in general) I see less people doing more and they say they are getting tired – or are they getting board.  Bored with the status quo and just filling positions and doing activities.  Maybe that is why people keep saying that we need new and exciting programs to get people excited and involved in the life of the church, but you know as well as I do that soon the excitement and newness wears off and we are bored once again.

 

How do we get beyond this?  How do we move from boredom and “programmed excitement”, to truly living and being the Body of Christ?  Read below what Peter has to say about this (especially the bolded text).

 

1 Peter 2:4-12  As you come to him, a living stone rejected by men but in the sight of God chosen and precious, you yourselves like living stones are being built up as a spiritual house, to be a holy priesthood, to offer spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ.  For it stands in Scripture: “Behold, I am laying in Zion a stone, a cornerstone chosen and precious, and whoever believes in him will not be put to shame.”  So the honor is for you who believe, but for those who do not believe, “The stone that the builders rejected has become the cornerstone,” and “A stone of stumbling, and a rock of offense.” They stumble because they disobey the word, as they were destined to do.  But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for his own possession, that you may proclaim the excellencies of him who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light.  Once you were not a people, but now you are God’s people; once you had not received mercy, but now you have received mercy.  Beloved, I urge you as sojourners and exiles to abstain from the passions of the flesh, which wage war against your soul.  Keep your conduct among the Gentiles honorable, so that when they speak against you as evildoers, they may see your good deeds and glorify God on the day of visitation.

 

Peter deals with two basic topics here – the centrality of Christ and the call upon and position of believers.  The second is where I would like to focus.  Many times when we are a part of the church, we are seen (overtly or not) as “pieces that keep the church alive.”  This is the wrong way to look at the church and our place in it.  How would our perspective change, how would our energy be channeled, how would our focus be different (as individuals and the church as a whole) if we were to know in our heart and head as well as live out the truth that we are a chosen priesthood and holy nation.  It is not up to the hired hand or those who take on leadership positions to do the ministry.  It is not up to us to keep the church alive or open.  We are called as a people who have received mercy to share that mercy with others.  We are called to be a holy people called by God out of darkness into the light and then to shine God’s light for others.  That is exciting to know that God uses us to touch the lives of people where they are and not just to keep the church building open and functioning.  Our task is to remain faithful and live as God’s chosen people.

 

I am reminded of kids on summer vacation who begin with such great enthusiasm but get drawn into the mundane activities and ruts of watching TV, sleeping, video games and then say that they are board and there is nothing to do.  They get bogged down with the mundane and forget about the exciting and world that awaits them outside.  We in the church have gotten bogged down by the mundane tasks and even those that are meant to be engaging and energizing have become monotonous and we are bored.  We have forgotten about the exciting world that awaits us as we are faithful and live out the truth that we are God’s people called for His service.

 

Are you committed to the church because you think you have to in order to keep in open and functioning?  Are you committed to God’s call on your life to be a holy people chosen to live in this world in faithful ways that show the mercy we have received and call others to God’s light?

Advertisements

Responses

  1. There have been times in my life that I believe God has placed a calling on my life to fulfill a need, start a ministry, invest in leadership, etc. These callings were for a season, not a lifetime. These seasons were not only there to bless someone else but they were seasons where I would often learn and grow. When I would get too comfortable in my role it would be time to invest my energy somewhere else. Was it because of boredom? I don’t think so. It was more often that I was no longer depending on the Lord’s strength, but was doing it in my own. Rarely was I called to serve in an area where I could recognize my own strengths. Often I felt ill equiped to do what the Lord called me too. But through each of these experiences I have grown in my knowledge and love for the Lord. Was I doing this to keep a church open and functioning? No! I have never been one to see a need and then just start a program. I have started programs, but only after a prompting from the Holy Spirit. There are so many needs in our churches today that we, in our own power, could never fill them all. However, if we act on the Holy Spirit’s promptings we will have abundant energy to meet the needs for the season he has assigned.

    When we get bogged down with the mundane, when our ministry is no longer exciting, I think then it is time to look within to our motives. Are we doing this for the Lord, or ourselves? Has the Lord released us from this call? Are we afraid of something new and different? Are we afraid of some else filling a role we have held onto for so long? God’s call on our lives should never be mundane or boring. When we are “called” we should experience the joy and excitement that the Holy Spirit brings. Each “call” should bring growth and a new found commitment level to the Lord and that in itself will never be mundane or boring.

  2. I agree with your statement about attendance in church not being at the level it has been in years past. In my own observation, I believe it has to do with balance. If a person works, whether it be outside of the home or a homemaker, has a family to take care, club involvement or just being at home, you will find that if that person is not attending church because they are not in balance. Either their time is being focused on their club involvement, work, etc., which means something needs to be omitted inorder for all of these things in a person’s life to be done. Then the sad reality is that when an unfortunate incident happens, the first thing a person may do to help them through their ordeal is to return to the church. The church is always there unconditionally every day of your life and it is the sad that this happens too often because of a imbalance in a persons life. I have been involved in the legal system,in the past, and on many occasions when someone commited a crime, they would all make the statement “I have found the Lord again and I am attending church again”. This was usually made to help them and I wonder … are they still attending church regularly? I think that within the church that when someone is called to fulfill a position, that they are happy to be able to accept the position especially in that there are countries that do not allow Christianity. I hope that we all are thankful for our church whether it is “boring” or whatever excuse is offered and be appreciative that we are given the opportunity to go to church.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Categories

%d bloggers like this: