The Reverend Dr. Farley suggested via email that I write a blog based on Chaplin Mark Steven's email sent to all his friends entitled Wake Up Church. Since I'd recently written the blog "Who Sold You That Line of..." which I truly believe was Spirit led, I agreed to pray about it. I usually just read the blogs of others and comment on occasions. However, if you read the long winded easy read "Who Sold You That Line of..." you will see that the email topic of Chaplin Stevens and my blog had common ground. As I shared via email with Chaplin Stevens and others, Dr. Farley asked me to pray to see what God has for me to say re: Wake Up Church, hence this blog, Are you churching?
Initially, I prayed that night, but I didn't get anything, and during my morning offerings and praise to Father, I sought Him for guidance for my scripture for that day, and Father took me to the 4 books of Colossians, particularly chapters 2 and 3. It doesn't take a rocket scientist to see that something just "aint" right about the church as an organization. Sometimes I have to ask myself the question, even when I'm home in my private closet, "regi are you churching?" In short are you doing a lot of self taught, and man taught, stuff! Religious stuff!
Now we can blog back and forth and forth and back over and over and over again, talking about what the organization--the church looks like. We can do the same when it comes to the running of the church as a business, we can do this with doctrine, with teaching and preaching techniques and so on. Some are even still hung up on whether a woman can even teach or preach, or how we dress and on and on and on! We can get into the money and the schemes, and tricks and so on, but didn't the bible already tell us this would happen? Are we talking about anything new under the sun? Then why are we talking about it at all? "Be you doers of the Word!" What word is that? The Gospel of Jesus Christ!
If you were called and then chosen by Father, then He's given you a clear task as outlined in His Word. If you are a child of God, He's given you a clear task as outlined in His Word, you only need to seek the Holy Spirit for guidance. When I read the books of Colossians, it was even clearer to me. Let me just type some verses for you to meditate on: But please read these 4 insightful and powerful chapters, it takes a few minutes!
Ch 2 Vs 8-10 & 17-19: 8 Beware lest anyone cheat you through philosophy and empty deceit, according to the traditions of men according to the basic principles of the world, and not according to Christ, 9 For in Him dwells all the fullness of the Godhead bodily; 10 and you are complete in Him, who is the head of all principality and power. 16 So let no one judge you in food or in drink, or regarding a festival or a new moon or Sabbaths, 17 which are a shadow of things to come, but the substance is of Christ, 18 Let no one cheat you of your reward, taking delight in false humility and worship of angels, intruding into those things which he has not seen, vainly puffed up by his fleshly mind, 19 and not holding fast to the Head, from whom all the body, nourished and knit together by joints and ligaments grow with the increase that is from God!"
There is so much more within this short 4 chapter letter from Paul. I read this and said Amen! God is not interested in all the traditional powerless programs and busy work we do. God is not interested in all the Jezebel controls and manipulative restraints we (man) but on serving Him. A repeat, I might add of trying to live by, in and according to the law, rather than through the Holy Spirit. He made it clear in His word what's important: the greatest commandment is to Love God with all, not partial, not some, not a little bit, not seasonally, but with all our hearts, and more…our minds, and more…our souls, and then we need to turn around and Love our neighbor as ourselves, and our enemies, foes, those fake hypocrites, those getting on our last nerve, and all those that are not easy to Love because they are not glorifying and worshipping us! If we operate in a fraction of the Love that Jesus showed for us, wow! I can't think of one of you that I'm willing to lay my life down for; would you die for me, really now? I want to get there, but I'm not there!
You see I know I'm not there and I'm honest enough to admit it. We are not solid like the apostles, we are not united and on one accord. We are too busy trying to be right, that we are so wrong! We are not brethren and sisters, we are jocking for position, for praise and acceptance from man, and money and more money, and stuff, religious bondage, and that my friends get's us Jack, nothing! This is not a blog I can write in one setting because it too big, God is so Big, He's so amazing and so Huge and so Large, and So Loving, and So Terrible, and So Powerful, and So God, I just can't sit in one setting and express what I believe he wants from us as family members.
Here's a stab at it. I'd just finished a 3 day fast, seeking Father for guidance and just to be closer to Him. I read the scripture where the disciples got too big for their britches when Jesus gave them charge to go out and heal, and as a pastor shared this word on Sunday, he said for every healing, and miracle, he imagined that the disciples got a little puffed up and cocky, they forgot the big head and maybe starting seeing themselves as something great as the people praised them and cheered them on. But when they met up with the demon boy they could not cast him out. He imagined in shame they were losing their fame, and when Jesus came and cast the demon out, in dismay they asked why, and Jesus replied, "This kind comes by fasting and praying." That means I'm willing to deny me and give you all the praise and glory taking none for myself, but being honored that you elected to use little ole me. It means Lord I want it so I'm willing to sacrifice for it! You might as well, because in case you forgot, you "aint" nothing without Him! So you see, I'm constantly seeking to be closer to Father, because I understand very clearly that this flesh of mine has some mighty power, and it will take full control and run me into a ditch, and I don't have any real power over it, but by the grace of God through His Holy Spirit. No doubt, I have no clout, but God's got it all. So seeking Him, to be closer, to be obedient, to build my faith, to get it right this time, no more 40 years in the wilderness for me! I ended the fast.
As I was vacuuming the next day and talking to God, these words came our of my mouth: "Shut up, Shut up, Shut up, you liars, you whoremongers, backbiters, hypocrites, false prophets, and deceivers, you users of my word and name for selfish gain, you crooks and Jezebels, you workers of iniquity, shut up and know that I am God." I quickly fell to my knees and said, Father I need to shut up too, so I can hear your voice. As tears ran from my eyes, because I don't deserve His mercy and grace, I'm not worthy, yet I love Him with all that I am able to Love Him with at this place in my walk (yet I know I've only tapped the surface of the Love I will have for Him), I cried and shouted praises to Father, for I know Father is ready for a few good men and women. He said this men, in the last days He would pour out His spirit on all mankind, and He's used us, women, throughout. God wants us to shut up and let the Holy Spirit speak through us; we know nothing without wisdom and understanding from the Holy Spirit!
We are too busy with our programs, our structure, our way, our Way, that we are missing God's WAY, It's not about us, it's about God. We don't need clever messages, just the MESSAGE. God told us His word would never return void; it will always accomplish what it is to accomplish! You can't pray hard or long to make it happen, you can't shuck and jive, you can't cry louder, or shout louder, you need to let go and let God. Just preach the gospel. Trust God. I don't care how many members you've got in your church, (they’re bodies) or how big and bad you think you are; I don't care how gigantic you've allowed that head and ego of yours to get, God is the only one who adds to the Church. You can't save one soul, only by being a vessel can you even hope to draw by lifting Him up. Joining your organization, did not make a person a member of God's church. God sees the heart of man, we can't see their hearts or know their intents unless God reveals it to us. He answers those with broken and contrite spirits, ready with fertile soil to receive. As pastor said in his sermon today, " He is your source for ministry, you are only on an assignment!"
I like what He said, when he said the mistake started when someone said "I Will" (satan). I thought to myself and we have been I'ing ever since. It's not what we will, but what God wills. "Thy Kingdom come, Thy will be done!" Remember these words? Pastor shared that we operate through ideology and the mess of our flesh, but know, it's the Christ in us, the Hope and Glory!
I ask: "Where is the power of the church and in the church?" Why are we not truly operating in power as God speaks of power? Not in numbers or how many people showed up and out. Not in how many people said they accepted Christ. Not in how big of crowd you can pull or even hold, but, I ask you, when Father comes back and looks at your record, who will be the person that was talked about, glorified, honored in gifts, wealth, words, and things? Will your ministry be about numbers, as in the business of sales? Where you chosen to grow the church? If so, why? God adds to the church daily. Are you churching? How is your order of service and what happens if someone changes it or gets it out of order?
I was at a church and the praise team just couldn't get it right according to the lead singer also pastor, so they stopped and started and stopped and started, and I was getting very uncomfortable, but I was too through when the leader, although not one word was spoken, or ugly face made that I could see, but the leader in her own mind I assume was so frustrated, said: "How many of you think you can do better than us?" She went on about how they rehearsed this and the devil is a lie, and everyone said amen and amen, and displaying fear of false humility, and she rant and raved about how we didn't know what it was like to be up there, and how they were going to get the song right. Let me say this, they never have the songs right, so what was the big deal. After 3 or 4 stops on the song, if the spirit was thinking about inhabiting the praise, I'm certain he left after this. Not one person was saying a word, and the final rendition of the song was no better. I was outdone, and I had to laugh, because I thought if I knew that song, I think I would have said, I can, because I sing for His glory, not man’s. I asked God to give me strength to praise him past this. My point, this was about man not Father!
Let's try to come together as one. You be responsible. Forget about all the others, and let go and let God. Forget the mess. If you are divided in your mind with the foolish things of the world, how can you be about Father's business of working the Harvest? Ask yourself what you aspire in the ministry? Are you looking for fame, and a big name, what greater name than Jesus, but the pay was very lousy? He didn't have a place to lay His head, but the reward landed Him at the right hand of the Father. What's your motive? Did Father choose you or man? This is my heart sharing with you. I pray that it will cause you to think, to examine, and to reaffirm your true call to work for the Kingdom. Let us pray for one another and let our lives glorify Father. Amen....Blessings, Evangelist regi