Recently, for reasons that are a little beyond my understanding, I’ve sought out folks that are intentionally incorporating their faith into the work place. Maybe it was Africa, maybe it was World Garden. But I’ve really enjoyed folks that are impacting the work place by incorporating their life’s mission. Yesterday I met one such undertaking. This non-profit buys real estate near a college campus and rents out to students. While those students engage in discipleship programs, go to school, pay rent and live life. The rent collected goes to support efforts in third world countries. Hats off to Lightbearers Ministries; looking to incorporate their faith into sustainable, tangible ways of meeting the needs of those around them while teaching like-minded students.
Personally, I’m struggling. Like so many I’ve talked to, “doing church” is becoming less and less fulfilling. I frequently wonder if God is pleased with my “sacrifice of praise” or my offerings. What I mean is, I’m growing more and more dissatisfied with my own participation not to mention the overall effectiveness of the worship experience. Meaning no disrespect to our church staff or those who work so hard but I’m simply struggling with my view of worship, church, Bible study, and how we define those things. I’ve pulled out of everything “church” related and have found myself energized by stories of soup kitchens, orphans finding homes, and communities coming together to solve a crises. In most cases, being involved in those things seems more like worship than the experiences I have in church.
The phrase that seems to sum up my feelings in this internal debate is; doing life with someone seems far more genuine and effective than doing church. I’m sure that probably sounds very critical. It isn’t intended that way. I’ve just noticed that over the small number of years I’ve been in this community; the number of friends that I’ve done life with are very few but they are faithful. Those I do church with… I really don’t do anything with.
I miss being excited about going to church on a Sunday morning. I really do. There was a time it was the joy of my week. It was motivational, inspirational, uplifting, and challenging. Now, spending an hour talking to a brother about Lightbearers gave me more encouragement in that one hour than the past month of Sundays.
What about you? Audit your own view of church. Does it stand up to the scriptures? Do you see the moving of the Holy Spirit? Do you witness signs, wonders and miracles? Do you pray believing? Do you worship with everything you’ve got; heart, soul and strength? What does it take to get you there?