The Commissioned Church


So, I’ve been reading a book called “Life After Church” by Brian Sanders. I just had to share a piece of what I’ve read.

“We are like a great warrior who has gotten lost on the way to the battle and been gone so long that he has forgotten what he set out to do. All that remain for the warrior are remnants of the original journey. Hanging over the fireplace is his old sword that stayed close for many years but now just hangs, gathering dust, a forgotten weapon of a forgotten mission. A shield is safely stored there, because the warrior no longer needs protection from anything; his life is all comfort. This may be why he never got back on his way; he found such a comfort in his lostness.
This is the story of the church. Sent by Jesus himself to subdue evil, to destroy all the works of the evil one, to proclaim freedom for the captive and good news for the poor, to declare and establish the triumph of God, we never go there.
We stopped in the city of mediocrity and moderation, and there in the decadence of that city we have forgotten that the city of God is yet to be built. While the rest of the world is wasting away under the tyranny of sin, and hell is having its way with our children, and the poor are sacrificed to the god of material wealth, the church is growing weak and its great weapons – the Word of God and fiath – have become sermon titles and concerpts relegated to the realm of self-help and person inspriation.
We have lost our way, and worse, we have forgotten to care. The battle yet rages. Where is the church?
The church exists to do what God rcreated it to do. For that reason the chruch an never simply be; it also has to do. We might argue that being comes before doing, but however you get to it, Jesus explained that a tree is known by its fruit. In other words, what we do defines who we are and, of course, who we are defines what we do.”
“Likewise the church is defined by what it does in relation to what it has been asked to do and its obedience to or compliance with that directive. We have to return to a definition of church that honors this reality.”

Yesterday afternoon, my friend and I were sitting on cold bleachers watching a junior high football game and she asked me, “What if the church had been truly about the business of being the church. Do you think government would be like it is?”

That’s a good question and really the answer is “who knows?” but I do wonder. If the church was about the business of caring for its neighbor, looking out for the children around them, and feeding anyone they saw who was hungry, I think I would be out of a job. I’m not sure that would be a bad thing. 😉


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