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Thursday, March 1, 2012

Permission?

A question has been plaguing me since last Sunday.

Why do Christians need permission to act like Christ?

Mr and I sat in a meeting last Sunday at church and I found myself quietly listening to pastors excitedly talking about a ministry they'd like to start.....and the Lord telling me to "shut up and listen".  My face was probably quite loud compared to my voice because I think my eyebrows were actually sore from being furrowed in confusion.   Ultimately it was a lovely outreach idea but I kept thinking....um, Duh?   I loved their excitement and passion to mobilize people to reach out in their own communities, being salt and light to people who wouldn't ordinarily "do church".  

I ended up with more questions as to why this was needed than anything else.  

Why the need to formally organize people to reach out to un-churched people in their lives?  Shouldn't that be the natural flow of every Christian?   We come to Him by whatever means and then the growing process starts, we learn and slowly we become equipped with Truth, filled with the fruits of the Spirit and then naturally we treat the world around us as an opportunity to be a skin-on representative of Christ.   We are to be Christ to everyone we meet regardless of their relationship to Jesus.  

So I wonder....why the need for this?  Is this not happening?   Are people not being Christ-like?  If not, then why not?  Are they not equipped or are they not mature?  Or both?   If so the root of the issue is not to send out a bunch of people who will effectively bring en-mass "I like your Christ, I do not like your Christians, they do not act like your Christ."  

Ephesians 4:11-16 uses repeated statements about equipping, building up the body, attain to the unity of faith and knowledge, to mature manhood, no longer be children, speak the truth in love, grow up in every way, the whole body, equipped, each part is working properly.....these are all the words I underlined in this section of scripture that was used.  Not one is about outreach but how the body needs to be attended to, developed, taught and equipped.  

John 15:4  "Abide in Me and I in you.  A the branch cannot bear fruit by itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in Me."

Which makes me go back to the beginning.....why do Christians need "permission" to act like Christ?  What is missing in the discipleship process if they don't know how to act like Christ?

Still thinking out loud.....still processing what it is that the Lord is trying to show me in this......and what He wants me to do about it.

Blessings of His love and mercy to be new today,
the Mrs.

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