We're raising generations who've learned to use utensils, but then only where someone makes it all for us and spoon feeds us with a paper wrapper. No planning, no shopping, no pots and pans, no cooking time, no setting tables, no cleaning up or doing dishes and putting them away... VOILA'. Order it, eat it, crush the paper up in 10 sec., throw it in the trash (or out your car window) and you're off to more personal entertainment.....
Well, if that's what you've been taught is cool, then why would you want to do or learn anything different. Anything else would be un-natural and take way to much effort. Where's the remote for cryin out loud!
So, of course I was speaking of the natural diet, and now I'll take the red pill, and discuss it in the supernatural diet and the supernatural restaurant we call church.
blogging is so interesting because it's not a "position paper" or a crafted sermon or an edited article. It's a journel on continuous thought. It let's people know what's really going on in your head without all the "handlers" and editors. It's why most who read blogs dislike seeing parts of peoples books quoted and such. Gee, we can read books every day, but we cant see into the minds and lives of peoples real journey.
I remember once, years ago, having written something about someone without using names, but "someone" read it and figured it out and "schooled me" about writing that while at the same time telling me not to take it off the blog because that would break a cardinal rule of truth and honesty and transparency in blogging.
Ok back to point on "spoon feeding".
Somewhere in our walks with Jesus, we must be taught or learn on our own that we must learn to feed ourselves. Just like I wrote at the top about food, it must be with spiritual food.
Any less, and we end up on spiritual welfare. And just like many parts of the medical fields, they are very happy to keep you coming to get spoon fed, drugged, explained, cracked or pampered. Hey... you work hard, "you deserve a break today" We want to serve you, and it feels good. Just keep the dues comin and the co/pays.
Now. That's ultra cynical, and I'm going over the line here for a reason. The truth that's in that statement should make us all a bit uncomfortable. If it doesn't, and we're reading here, and explaining away or trying to justify everything your feeling against what I'm saying, then , "that" should be red flag to your own heart my dear friends.
Church has changed so much in the last 20 years due to the advent of modern worship music, the internet and the gen-x and millennial generation. Glory to God it's all good. Yup, God is in the midst of it.. The Dude Abides and the story goes on.
As for how we get fed, when we get fed and what nutritional value is there for us spiritually in what we eat or get spoon fed ...
Well Howie Mandel says "pick a briefcase". The million dollar answer is in one of those halliburton cases.
Ok, I'm diving in now.
I'd suggest this. If you've been a believer for 2,5, 10, 20, 30, 40+ years, then you should have a pretty good foundation of the Word laid as well as your own systems of cooking your own spiritual meals, feeding yourself and .... feeding others and teaching them how to cook.
So much of modern and ancient church was all about the oracle. I have the answer, the correct spin, the great inspiration, dedication, alliteration , dissemination and on and on.
For how long did the church not allow the "commoners to read the Word in a language they could read or write." How many centuries were the people not allowed to sing a new song".
These oracles did not oppress the people to hurt them. They were just subjects that needed help and understanding from those with the knowledge. It's ok, hey, we accepted slavery for how long and that was sure ok to all those men and women of God, for after all they were giving them a new life, free boat ride, gainful employment, safety, medical and potential education... There is Always some good in bad and some bad in good as we deliver it mortally.
So again back into Spoon Feeding.
I'm trying to say that we now have the internet. Yup some in ministry have not even really thought about what that means outside of emails and a website. REALLY!!!!
It is that mindset of the past that is caught there and will most likely die off or try to embrace the future 10 years after the trend is gone. Wondering why it doesn't work like it did for those who wrote the book.
I'd say learn from the past, see the current trend and act on the future. Yup you'll fail more, but you'll be in the fast water not in the DSL turtle commercial.
QUESTION: Who taught you how to feed yourself, how did they model it and what fruit did you see from it in their lives to inspire you to follow that lead.
I never had a mentor when I accepted Christ. I was a loner. Didn't get saved through an organized church or minister, therefore I didn't have anyone checking on me or teaching me and watching me.. What a shame. I had to learn the hard way. Bigger highs and Bigger lows...
Now I look at the internet. The great new pipeline of information. The amount of incredible bible teaching and expository teaching or preaching from different giftings is beyond what you could ask or imagine. 30 years ago we HAD to be in church to hear a sermon unless Billy Graham was coming to within 200miles of our home town or a traveling evangelist was passing through with their family that all look alike..
ITS OVER!!! LET IT GO!!! EMBRACE THE FUTURE.
You can subscribe to blogs and tweets and F.B. pages and websites of the past, current and future greatest handful of teachers that ever taught today from your TELEPHONE... let alone your laptop or even old school (dare I say) desktop computer....
In all the fallenness of the internet and the sin that fills it's walls, there is more good and anointed righteousness, teaching and wisdom that in the history of man.
Soon, and very soon, the church (which is the people) will realize this and church as we know it will be changed forever. What will happen with the 4 walls as we've known it. Will the global economy hurt us so much that like Europe, churches will be art museums and become places for weddings and funerals? I hope not.
15 years ago visionaries begin the satellite church movement and "video venues". Now with high speed internet moving into new territory, who knows how long that will last before it goes back to smaller and smaller venues with better and better media.
I sure hope big churches dont lie dormant but become daycares and homeless shelters and places for widows and orphans.
Traveling quite a bit through Europe over the years, I've grieved so much at what the church was and became in the hands of "old school and inner circles of the wise and privileged". Europe became house churches and charismatic small groups living more new testament than we could have ever imagined.
Is that were America is heading? Is PTL, and Crystal Cathedral just signs of things to come..?
Yup, I'm afraid so, but that doesn't depress me at all because GOD DOES NOT LIVE IN BUILDINGS AND TV SETS... Glory Hallelujah, can I geh-hit an A-mennn. He lives in you where ever you go.....
So where does this leave "do not forsake the assembling of the people and breaking bread together and , and, what happens to worship (musical worship for those who want to get heady here). Does that move to the internet as well? Do we find a way like with preaching to get what we need from the ether? Will 3'D holographic worship be so real that we all can enter in and really, really get moved and enter that secret place? I hope so. Hey I don't care about MY JOB or SKILLS. I care about how best men can connect to GOD. If that's through the internet and some new form of technology and only 200 incredible worship leaders can lead the planet in worship in ways we never imagined and the other 1million worship leaders have to go get real jobs and thank God that He's ever moving and changing. Well, same goes for the rest of the 5 fold. Get with it or go home and back into the public sector being the ministry "you are" in Christ to the world around you outside of those 4 walls.
Church will always exist as long as Christ does not return. It will just shape shift with the rest of the ever changing landscape. Its' those of us who "live" within those walls that are in for the big wake up call to downsize, change or move so God can get er done.
Well moving is easier said than done. Homes, cars, family, STUFF. They are the great idols that keep us from moving ahead and forward with God. Tragic. Yup it's me as well. I'll say me first!
I sit now pondering leaving ministry to focus my hands again in the market place where all the people i love a pray for are. And the living and breathing and eating?
Well... I hope and pray I've taught myself enough about how to feed myself that I can survive without being spoon fed each week. I love being fed mind you. Its' fantastic to find a great chef that can "bring it" to you when you're hungry.
However it's kinda funny, that in all my favorite restaurants over the years, I've never had a chef tell me I should go home and learn to cook.
(up next.. the value of worship in corporate church... ouch...)