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    I Goofed (Church Show Blog)

    June 12, 2016


    They say that apologizing is kind of like throwing up; you feel miserable before you do it, but so much better afterward. I definitely felt a little sick after I wrote that post about the church becoming a show (which is now in the trash). And I am sorry. I goofed. 

    Here’s what happened. I visited a church while traveling last week. It was a certain style. As I was observing everything, Faith-the-Writer took center stage while Faith-the-Merciful was shoved to the side. My mind was busy scribbling descriptives about everything around me. I found my muse. I came home and wrote it all out. And edited about 3,000 times. I didn’t have anyone read it before hitting “publish.” 

    After publishing, I had that sinking feeling that something wasn’t right, even though the feedback was largely positive, confirming what I sense God saying (despite my wreckless delivery of it). But then a few people wrote and confirmed what I already knew: I had left spittle on the Body of Christ (the Church) with my careless words.

    I’ll skip those details about what that was like, to be corrected. It’s never fun, but if we all could be more teachable the world would be a lot better place.

    Anyway. I said a lot of good and important things in the post, as I am shaken up in a good way by the church visit. I’ve spent more time than I have in a while on my face praying in tears about what God has been shouting to me concerning what He wants in a church, and I spent my sermon time having a heart-to-heart talk with the congregation about it this morning.

    But as for the post, here’s the germ of what I needed to say, without all the chaff:

    The Church Show must not go on. I’ve seen it in every style and size church. Every kind. Where I went wrong was giving the impression that it only happens within a certain local church model. Honestly, and if you could kindly cut me a little slack, I just wasn’t thinking (I do that sometimes, not think). Now that I think about it, it is so true: The Church Show happens in the most pious of places. 

    But I’m not singling out anyone or any church any more. I’m saying what I said before: I want to be done with the show. I’ve been guilty of thinking I had to create some “experience” for people on Sunday. That’s a lot of pressure! No wonder pastors are so burned out. What we need is a real return to book-of-Acts worship. All of us. Big church, small church, old church, new church. We need the Holy Spirit.

    Thanks for reading. 

    P.S. (Here is the last part of my original post, printed with permission from Faith-the-Editor):

    I don’t want to “invite the Holy Spirit” to be part of the show; I want Him to crash in and be a show-stopper–something felt so powerfully as to not be so easily overcome by the call of the outdoors on a summer Sunday.

    I want the Holy Spirit in my church. Our church. I want Him, even if He’s not cool, loud and shiny. I want His still small voice to be heard, and that might mean stopping the music and waiting in “awkward silence.” I want his loud, booming voice to be heard, and that might mean ditching the program or stepping aside from the pulpit and letting him speak through someone else. I want Him in all His radiant glory and splendor, and that might mean being very much okay with The Building and Its People As-Is, with all our glaring imperfections and incompletions.

    I don’t want The Church Show. I don’t need “cool” unless it’s the refreshing breeze of God as He breathes new life into our services in such a way that we never leave the way we came. I want Him to shake us out of ourselves and blow us wide open with a new fire that’s marked by–not the “signs and wonders” of a stage personality–but the flowing tears of those who mean business when it comes to not doing business as usual in church.

    sad-boy

    Image Credit: Creative Commons

    3 thoughts on “I Goofed (Church Show Blog)

    1. Julie Gill says:

      Thanks for your humility and transparency! How we long for and desperately need a move of God in our churches! His show is always so much better anyway!

    2. Joseph Miller says:

      Amen Faith. We do need the Holy Spirit, the Breath of God. When God took dirt and formed man, it was only when He breathed into him that he became alive. (thanks Bob Hamp) The breath of God made the difference then, He makes the difference now. That difference is still life, with Him we have it, without we don’t.

    3. I love TobyMack’s song, “If You Want to Steal My Show,” I appreciate your honesty and humility!

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