Thursday, December 11, 2008

Overcoming the Saboteurs of Spirituality

'Blind man stood by the road and he cried, Blind man stood by the road and he cried, he cried, oh-oh, show me the way'-well not exactly, but it's a good song.
In Luke 18 we read of many things, but the one that struck me was the story of the Blind Beggar. You see, there was a blind man who had heard that Jesus was coming and when he found out Christ was coming near...he said 'Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!' Now you would think that those who came to listen to Jesus or to be near Jesus would be gracious, but instead they told him to keep quite.
In today's world and in today's church that's all that needs to be said. 'Be quiet'! It would seem that it's now human nature to silence those who interrupt our routine and our understanding. We don't like those who speak up and disrupt the status quo-those who refuse to keep quiet reject the compliance way of life (going through the motions steeped in 'traditions'). The truth is hard to hear isn't it? We would rather have people be silent than say anything disturbing about faith.
Now, interestingly enough when he was told to be quiet it embolden the man to become even louder. Wow, if only we had the courage to be as bold. Because you see, Jesus heard him and something was done-his faith made him whole.
Perhaps it's time we stepped up in faith and shouted louder! Especially for what is right concerning the Body of Christ-God's Church. It's not that traditions are bad, it's just that a lot of 'traditions' aren't rooted in Biblical teachings or principles.
I would like to close with a story that Mike shares in his book: Messy Spirituality. This story talks about a young woman who started working at an inner-city church. As time went on she started working with gang members. At one point she actually got them interested in attending church, but she decided to seat them in the balcony away from the usual congregation members. Once the pastor was done giving his sermon, one of the gang members got up and said 'Dude, you rock!'.
Would you like to know the congregations response? They turned around and were appalled. After the service she was confronted by various congregation members and leaders and told not to invite any more gang members in until they learned to behave because that was 'inappropriate.'
Feeling this was wrong, she continued...she was later fired, not thanked for her hard work and for touching the lives of those youth-rather she was fired and those youth went back to what they knew-rejection and intolerance.
It would seem this church was more concerned about comfort than it was about a group of gang members' discomforting search and struggle with spirituality and God.

1 comment:

Chris said...

Amen, and again I say AMEN! I hope the church hears you on this one!!!