Last weekend I was working with church leaders, tasked with discerning a God-formed vision. It’s mind bending work, but it is the stuff of leadership.
I enjoy making New Year’s resolutions. It’s an opportunity to put aside past mistakes and failures and start over in the coming year. I can start anew with my devotional or exercise program that I abandoned last year. My gym sent me an e-mail which declared this to be the “year of . . . you”. The e-mail went on to say, “It’s 100% your choice. It’s your decision. It’s in your hands. YOU are in control. YOU.” That’s the kind of talk I like – talk that centers around me. Of course, as a Christian I immediately recognize this to be worldly thinking, but I need to be careful. My thinking about resolutions can easily end up as worldly thinking masked by a thin veneer of Christian language.
What if we encouraged those in the pew, as we should in the classroom, to adopt a far more active stance? Imagine a church where the expectations for learning were far higher. People are not expected to simply take things in–but figure things out.
It’s not that the people of God should have avoided or withdrawn from politics. If anything, we should step into the public square and be a more compelling voice. But maybe the next time we should aim to be better equipped to be sent into the thick of it. Followers of Jesus have a mission to engage the world with grace and truth. It seems like we lost a fair measure of both.
This morning I worked through my daily list of readings – beginning with God’s Word. I have worked my way through the One Year Bible each year for nearly 30 years. If I didn’t, my spiritual growth would be stunted, deformed. I would read books more to my liking (Mark, Philippians) and read books less […]