“What the Church needs today is not more machinery or better, not new organizations or more and novel methods, but men whom the Holy Ghost can use — men of prayer, men mighty in prayer. The Holy Ghost does not flow through methods, but through men. He does not come on machinery, but on men. He does not anoint plans, but men, men of prayer.” – E. M. Bounds
As we move, more and more, to become the modern church – whatever that means? Our focus is more on what we can do – and less on what He can do/is doing. We are more focused on our programs and processes, than people, souls, and what God desires.
And although there is a desire to bring new people in, compel them to stay, and ensure that they engage and join the various programs available in today’s modern church. We struggle to find ways with which to make them feel welcome. It’s almost as though we have to buy their membership, if that’s a thing. I must admit, with this, I am struggling.
I don’t really want to be involved with any modern church where God is not. So, there begs the question: Where is God in all of this?
One thing that I look for in any church I attend is the presence of God. I want to be able to say, Ah, I can feel God in this place. I listen for truth. To hear the Word delivered in truth, love and grace, while keeping in mind Matthew 7:15. I also consider John 13:34-35, which speaks to the love demonstrated by the people of God. I have been to churches that truly represented the cliche: You come as a guest and leave as family. I have also been in churches where I did not feel welcome at all. And then there are the churches where it felt more like everyone, myself – as the guest – included, had a role to play in the visitor/guest program…
Again, I say, I am struggling. It’s a fine balance of serving God and serving the church and serving man. Where do you draw the line? How do I teach my kids? When the modern church is once again becoming a den of thieves. A place to buy and sell, to learn mindfulness techniques. Again, there begs the question: Where is God in all of this? The only answer I can see is that – He is not…
He does not care about the programs – that’s not going to get our churches to grow. He does not care about the coffee stands or cookies; the gift baggies or what’s selling in your church bookstore. He cares about the souls – winning the lost. He cares about the truth being shared to the individuals who are downtrodden, depressed and utterly lost.
I may stand alone in this sentiment today. But, no longer can I sit still. No longer can I pretend. No longer is the modern church a place that I want to be.