Category Archives: Missional Resources

Rethinking the Christian fight for America

I often wonder what types of things that I would think about and do if I wasn’t a Christian.  In particular, I wonder about those situations that occur in my life that I didn’t create.  In other words, would I handle certain situations different as a person who doesn’t care about what God thinks?  I think the obvious answer is yes.

On the other hand, I wonder if there are some things that I would like to do differently as a wiser Christian.  What I mean is maybe there are some situations and issues that I found myself in as a young Christian that I would like to do over.  My guess is that anyone who thinks there isn’t anything they would like to do over is full of self and likely thinks, “I am right.” “Everyone else is wrong.”

Since I’ve been a Christian I have seen an evolution take place in my life; maybe I should say a type of transformation in my life.  When I came to Christ I joined the “fight.”  All I knew was that I wanted to “do” for Jesus.  I remember yelling at family members who did not want to get saved.  Some of them I talked to them daily about getting saved.  Needless to say, they avoided me after a while, and looking back I don’t blame them.

Some of the “fight” was to “re-take” America.  I remember boycotting Walt Disney, shopping malls because they allowed certain “bad” stores to do business in them, ABC, and the list goes on.  I assure you that my motives were not bad.  I just wanted people to live for Christ.  Politics and preaching were important to me if “we” were going to take back America.

What happened to me was that I realized that we Christians who want to take America back actually created an “us” and “them” scenario.  There was a wall built between “us” and “them” that created a disconnect from God and His children.  The children being those who He created in His Image.  This includes both “us” and “them.”  We Christians were in one camp, and many still are, while those who did not believe the exact way we did were in another camp.

In our camp, we knew that the other camp was going to get theirs one day for all of the bad they have done to America.  But, the funny thing is that we in our camp never realized that we might what we deserve for all of the bad we have done to the Kingdom of God.  After all, we are the “enlightened ones” who know the will of God and understand His mission.  We should realize that there will be accountability for us too.

Consider that there are two camps, at least according to our thinking and behavior.  This means that those who follow Jesus are not living among them like Jesus did; and still does through the Holy Spirit.  Our message to the world has been, “Think and act like we do or we are leaving your behind to suffer.”  We haven’t communicated that God loves them and wants good for them and us.  He wants to be the Father that many of us haven’t had and wants to care for us while teaching us to care about others.

As a result of this misguided motivation, we have caused those in the other camp who try to venture to ours, to think that they have to get themselves together.  In other words, they need to clean up their lifestyles and then come to church.  At least that is what they’ve heard from us, whether or not we meant to communicate that.  Wow, Jesus is still cleaning me up because I can’t do and would never be able to do it; that is why we needed saved by the Savior.  In fact, they don’t see this because we have avoided contact with those who do not believe the way we do.

Thankfully, God began to remake me and to work on my focus.  I learned some time ago that those political fights lead us no where.  In fact, seeking a political solution to certain issues instead of a spiritual solution has created disdain from Christians toward those who practice different lifestyles.  Further, it has created disdain from those who are secular toward Christians too.  After all, before I was a Christian I didn’t care what Christians thought of me.  What is more, I didn’t care what the Bible said, and only a little about what God thought.  In fact, I’m not sure that I was afraid to go to hell.  I heard you gasp.  Listen, I felt that my life had always been hell.  I was used to it.

Now we come to the fight that The Church should’ve been more vocal about rather than political issues.  We Christians must learn to put coercion aside and focus persuasiveness when it comes to sharing Christ with those who are not living for Him.  Notice I didn’t use the term “Those who do not know Him.”  Newsflash! There are many who are aware of who Jesus is, or at least a version of Jesus, but sadly, we established the wrong fights and communicated that some shouldn’t even try to be saved.

I propose that The American Church get up in arms over all the hurting people who have felt pain all of their lives.  What I mean, instead of fighting to get prayer back in school, we should fight to get it back into homes.  In fact, we should be teaching “Christians” how to love like Jesus does.  This eliminates disdain, since we can’t possibly lead anyone to Christ through disdain.  What if Christians started caring for the community that they find themselves in instead of fighting against it all of the time.  Can you imagine telling someone who has not known the love of a father and mother that Jesus loves them?  How about telling someone that God never meant for them to suffer like they have?  Of course, this would have to replace the famous, “Well, God has a reason.”

What if we focused on developing healthy relationships with those who have none?  I think sometimes we Christians have become so used to our camp that we have forgotten to set those in the other camp free by persuading them to receive Christ’s love and ours.  To do this, at least in my mind, we can’t just settle for a food drive event, or a clothing drive, and etc. Instead we have to be willing to develop a lifestyle, everyday way of living, that includes living among those who are not following Jesus.

This proposal eliminates the camps structure and leads to win others through love and compassion.  Plus it takes the hope out of politics and places it back on Jesus Christ with a demonstration of the peaceful life, that if trouble comes, has hope for this life now through Jesus our Lord.  This demonstration is not the type where we can put our Christian masks on for and event, but we have to be transformed because we are living among those who are learing about Christ and His love through watching us and trusting us enough to learn from Him through us.

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Filed under Discipleship, God, Living it, Missional Resources, Relationships, Sacrifice, Salvation

Trouble for The Wesleyan Church?

I try to update my blog, that seems to be going the way of “Video Killed the Radio Star,” especially since the advent of Twitter at least once a month.  I also check it several times of month to see how active it is; not very. lol.  I have few readers who are subscribed to my blog and read it when I post.

What I notice in my statistics is that my blog is found most of the time because I am a Wesleyan pastor.  There seems to be a lot of people, I don’t know where, that are interested in finding out what The Wesleyan Church is.  They are interested in learning what The Wesleyan Church believes.  They want to know what the difference between Wesleyans and Baptists are.

Well there are a few differences, but Wesleyans and Baptists serve the same God and share the same fundamental doctrine that Jesus Christ is the only way to heaven.  Salvation is only found in Him alone.  The other differences are those that people can debate, can debate, can debate, can debate, got old didn’t? until the cows come home.

I think  the trouble that we Wesleyans are having in the 21st Century is that we do not know who we are either.  Simply put, if we did, then those who find my blog because of a search engine would not have to ask the search engine who the Wesleyans are.  We Wesleyans would be noted as those who seek to live Holy lives and are proactive in the face of immorality and injustice.

One question I ponder is why we Wesleyans struggle to be seen as instruments in the hands of Christ?  The first Wesleyan-Methodists, in my opinion, would have been considered a missional movement by our 21st Century standards.  Missional is one of the fads, that I strive to take part in because I follow Christ, that people are writing about in the Christian book culture.  One book title is called The Forgotten Ways by Alan Hirsch.  Sometimes I wonder how Christians forgot to be missional since the Bible teaches it. Is there a chance that many Wesleyan churches have forgotten this too?

I think The Wesleyan Church may need to remember who we really are.  We are supposed to be a movement.  The by-product of our doctrine of Sanctification, our love for Christ and others, is that we seek to become imitators of Jesus Christ especially in regard to the lost, poor, and least of these.  We go to them with the Gospel and seek to meet their needs when possible.  We cannot ignore this biblical doctrine.  I question sometimes if this is something that many pastors want to sweep under the rug.

What may seem to be trouble for us might be our opportunity to spread the Scriptural Holiness message that is missional.  This is good news for the world.  The good news is that people are asking questions about The Wesleyan Church.  We get to answer these questions by living our lives for Jesus; and use words when necessary.

If you are a part of The Wesleyan Church, then you need to make sure, along with me, to live a life that is “worthy of God” (1 Thess. 2:12).  Then people will know what we believe and in whom we believe.  Of course, if we do this, then my blog may be officially dead. 🙂 God bless.

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Filed under Holiness, Living it, Missional Resources, The Wesleyan Church

4 Gravitational Pulls All Churches Experience

I took these notes from Andy Stanley at the Newspring Leadership Conference in September. 

Text: Acts 15:1-21

One of his comments about the Scripture was that a controversy arose about the need for surgery to be saved. 

He also said that every church has a “they.”

1) Churches always gravitate toward insiders and away from outsiders.  Jesus liked people who were nothing like Him.  The people liked Jesus who were nothing like Him.  Resist this pull in the way you preach, build, and etc.  We must keep our churches externally focused. Red flag prayer requests. Sin, sorrow, and death are what makes our message more important!  Lost people are what matters!

My take: Prayer requests must be centered on people finding Christ.

2) Churches gravitate toward law instead of grace.  People think categorically instead of relational.  Love must always overcome rules.  Acceptance paves the way to influence.  Use grace to sort things out.  We will have to accept people who sin; not the sin.  Homosexuality, abortion, fornication. 

My take: Those who live this way must not be influenced away from the church. The Holy Spirit can still work with them and that is His job. 

3) Churches gravitate toward complexity instead of simplicity.  Clarity.  Partner don’t pioneer; fund and volunteer for other organizations that are already doing it.  Don’t lose your uniqueness in your community.

My take: We are all unique and have a purpose in God’s plan.  Sometimes we need to simply cut the fluff away and focus on the one thing we do.  Discipleship should be a clear process too. 

4) Churches gravitate toward preserving and not advancing.  The Jews were trying to preserve the Law of Moses.  The same Law that God gave him.  Do not move into a protection mode instead of moving into the community.  We cannot protect assets before fulfilling the mission.  Think like a church plant. How did we think when we did not have money? 

My take: Protect mode really brings everything to a stop.  The assets that we protect are Gods; we must watch burying our one talent.  

4 Commitments

1-Be more concerned about who we are reaching instead of who we are keeping.

2-Let’s error on the side of grace.

3-Remain focused on our unique calling.

4-Remain open-handed.  We started with nothing we may end with nothing; and that is okay.   

This is great advice.  I think this advice is great for a small church pastor.  There is a lot to chew on and ponder on here.  Everything in these notes I took are applicable even my small church situation.  I recently shared this with my board.  My goal was to help us focus on what is important.

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Filed under Church Attendance, Church Health, compassion, Faith, God, Homosexuality, Leadership, Missional Resources, Newspring Leadership Conference, Small Church, Vision

Thoughts on faith

Luke gave a great insight to what faith is supposed to look like in his gospel.  Luke was great at creating contrast between people and groups.  He contrasted human emotions many times which help to reveal character someone either in a positive or negative light to those who read his account.  With this in mind, I want to share a thought, or two, about the faith that Christians should have. 

Here is a definition of faith, Hebrews 11:1 (NIV) Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see.  Many times Christians use this verse as a biblical promise to be healed from a disease or something tragic.  But what if I use the word faith to describe someone who is devout?  You know, someone who gets it.  If I can use this word in that manner, then I am free to look at the context of a passage that uses the same word.  I’m gonna do it just for kicks.

In Luke 7:1-10, though we should look at the passages before and after, there is a snapshot of the word faith being used by Jesus about a centurion.  In this passage, Jesus heals the centurion’s servant.  Luke contrasted some people in this passage.  By the way, this passage comes after Luke’s Sermon on the Mount.  Jesus dealt with judging others in that passage. 

 Here are some contrasts in these 10 verses to look at from Luke himself.  The Centurion cares about his servant.  The Jews care about the Centurion, who has authority and who loved the Jewish nation and built their synagogue.  The Centurion had been good; at least a good tither.  Israel was a nation of priests devoted to God and had The 10 Commandments and Law.  The Gentiles, as depicted with the centurion who was considered to be unclean as a Gentile.  The rich and the poor.  The rich elders who cared about their nation and building and the man who had money, because they judged that he “deserved” for his servant to be healed.  The servant, who only had 2 people worried about him, Jesus and the centurion.  People with pride and those who are humble.  I might be missing some other things to look at but you get the picture.  And, all of this was taking place before a fickle crowd.

The Jews were supposed to care about the widows and the orphans, the poor, and the alien.  It was written throughout the Law to them.  In the way of this type of love, they were to be distinct from the world.  They did not do well with this.  Yet, the centurion cared about his servant.  Most of the time we Christians just want to talk about the centurion’s faith because healing took place on account of his faith.  The problem with this is that we have it backwards, we look for the miracle because we want to see someone who is important to us to be healed.  All the while Jesus is looking at us to see if we have the faith of the centurion. 

Simply, the faith of the centurion was the picture of someone who got it.  The elders did not get it according to Luke.  There care was for the money man.  Maybe they thought, “Hope Jesus can do this so that the centurion will continue to be good to us; otherwise he may give up on our God.”  Of course we know that if he gave up on God, that would mean that the money would stop.  Therefore, they did not get it.  The very Law they taught was not within their hearts.  Too many Christians today focus on the same things that the elders did.  Respectable people who can help the church.  Heaven forgive us!

The Centurion, who ironically I assume learned the Law from the Jews, cared for the poor much.  He lived out what he heard.  He cared about the same thing that Jesus did, the poor.  If only, elders in churches today would focus on the same things that Christ is focused on.  I believe people would see a dramatic move of God instead a manufactured move of social justice.  The centurion was humble, he was not bragging about his authority, because was under authority.  He simply recognized Christ as the Authority in contrast with the elders.  All the while the crowd is watching. 

So if you were in the crowd watching Christ, and you heard Him say that He has “not found such great faith even in Israel,” how would you respond?  Would you say to yourself that Jesus’ point was that we should try real hard to believe so that by faith people could be healed?  Or, do you think that He meant that the Jews, who were supposed to know God, were not living their faith out in regard to love for others?  I think Jesus would say this to the Church today.

In my view, Jesus pointed out plainly that the centurion was living by the Law.  His heart was different from the Jews.  This meant that the centurion would enter Heaven before the elders and the Jews.  Shocking!  Because we Christians teach about believing God for our healing from this passage instead of teaching about the humility and love that God desires from us. 

Does your relationship with Christ resemble the elders or the centurion?  What does your heart care about?  The nation and the church building, or those who are “the least of these?”  Christians, it is time to stop placing hope in politics, money, and people.  It is time to quit associating with Jesus because He has power.  Instead, it is time to allow Him to live through us because He loves us.  And if He lives through us, this means that we will care more about those in need than building facilities.  So what is faith to you?

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Filed under Christianity, compassion, Faith, Holiness, Living it, Miracles, Missional Resources

Christian classification

One of the characteristics that I see in the American Christian Church is the way Christians, both Lay and Clergy, blow off certain churches.  The thinking seems to go along these lines: That church will not change.  That church is too old. That church is out of touch with reality.  Nothing happens at the church.  That church has bad music.  That church has a bad preacher.  That church has a bad doctrine.  I think you get the picture, some churches get classified by people because they have a different organic make-up than others. 

Another reason for the blow off could be money.  After all, we living our Christian lives in the era of the mega-church.  This means that there is not enough money to do the ministry the way it should be done.  Well, the way it should be done according to different groups of people.  Yet, should we classify a church according to her wealth?  I think not.  The problem with money is that it has the tendency to focus on the new fad of Christianity.  Moreover, it has the power to hinder pray between a church and her Groom. 

If the church is really the Lord’s, then there is not a money issue.  Yet, if a church is not the Lord’s, but has money, it may take a while to know how that church should be classified. 

Another way we classify churches is through leadership.  Pastors are continually competing with each other so that we can attract people.  Church leaders look for certain types of men and women in hopes of trying to find the next Rob Bell, Perry Noble, Rick Warren, and etc.  I don’t know the stats, but I wonder how many books are being written to teach pastors how to be like these guys as leaders, compared to how many books are being written with the purpose to teach pastors how to be Spirit led.  You know, Spirit led instead of CEO leading. 

Some churches seem more likely to be used by God because it makes sense to most Christians.  Yet, if unlikely churches preach the Cross, then church classification could be dangerous.  After all, doesn’t it just seem like a wise choice that some churches cannot be effective and others can?  Maybe the Bible had some of this mind when it addressed the way we tend to think.  “Where is the wise man? Where is the scholar? Where is the philosopher of this age? Has not God made foolish the wisdom of the world? For since in the wisdom of God the world through its wisdom did not know him, God was pleased through the foolishness of what was preached to save those who believe” (1 Corinthians 1:20-21).

Ultimately, God can work through any church He pleases.  The moment Christians start classifying a church is the moment that God is no longer trusted to be God. 

If you, no matter who you are, have written off a church because you have classified it, then you need to examine whether or not you are using the wisdom of the world or the foolishness of God to make your judgments. 

God chose the weak things of the world to shame the strong. He chose the lowly things of this world and the despised things—and the things that are not—to nullify the things that are, so that no one may boast before him (1 Corinthians 1:27b-29). 

Christians, stop the classification.  I have been part of a church that was down to 8 people and witnessed what God did those who believed that He could.  Christians if you want a challenge, go where it seems unlikely for God to work.  You will be surprised at what He can do.  😉

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God bless America

This year the Fourth of July landed on Sunday.  This is fitting since we say God bless America. 

I asked a few people how God blesses America.  I had some interesting feedback.  As I suspected, the view was that God blesses us because He has chosen us and because we support Israel. 

I think as Christians there are some things we should consider.  One thing that should be thought about is that God blesses the world and not just America.  I know that I am sounding less than patriotic.  I love America!  John 3:16-17 tells me that God blesses more than America. 

Yes, America is chosen, but God has chosen the world to be His too.  So what makes America special?  It is the way that God blesses America.  He uses His Church.  That’s right.  As unpopular the Christian Church is right now, in the West, God uses His people to bless others wherever they may be geographically. 

Another issue that should be understood in a better light, and I realize that there are other theological views, is that God doesn’t bless America because we protect Israel.  We should be allies with Israel, but God doesn’t need us for this.  We need Him to protect us.  We haven’t brokered a deal with God as we tend to think sometimes. 

Here is what we Christians need to ponder.  Do we continue to serve God through our patriotism?  Or, do we serve Him through humility?  In the OT, I am as always taken back when I consider that Israel combined patriotism to their country with Temple worship as a way that made them distinct from other nations.  Yet, in Nehemiah and Ezra, they were challenged to observe the Law to become distinct from other nations.  After all, they did not have borders during this time.   

Amazingly, churches likely preached sermons about how bad our nation has gotten all over this last Sunday.  I can hear it now, “God will no longer bless our country because of homosexuality and the fact that prayer has been taken out of school.  God is also mad that other gods are being worshipped and tolerated.  He is mad because we have publishers printing of the a different Bible version than the KJV.  Therefore, He is going to punish America.”

Now, I am being a little harsh and I know it.  Nevertheless, is God not concerned with the state that the American Church has gotten to? How many church attendees all over are focusing material things that they can get their hands on instead of making disciples?  How many even attend their churches on a regular basis?  How many give to God others who have need?  How many are practicing sexual immorality?  How many are judging others on a regular basis? How many church attendees are striving to overcome sin?

So the threats that God is going to judge America if our political leaders don’t enact laws and mottos that say we support God may not need to be focused on.  It would appear that God might have a beef with Christians because they are no longer willing to live for Him so that our country can be blessed. 

These are some of the thoughts that I had this last week of the Fourth.  Church signs everywhere talking about our God-given freedom and the threat that God may judge America because those who have not known Jesus are sinning.  Maybe it is time the Church stood up and accepted her responsibility that God has given her.  This is what makes us (Christians) distinct from those who lost in the world.

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The Wesleyan Church needs to . . .

The Wesleyan Church has been in a constant struggle for change since I joined our denomination 13 years ago.  Sometimes I am on board with change and other times I think that we are drifting off course.  I am a first generation Christian from my family.  My purpose for saying that I am a first gen Christian is that it should help you understand where I am coming from.  I did not grow up in church.  I did not know what a Wesleyan church was until I was 26.  When I was 14 a student at my high school was killed in a car wreck and his obituary I heard that he was a member of the Wesleyan church next to my home town.  My wife attended the Wesleyan church before I got saved.  I thought, in both cases, that the Wesleyans were not really Christians since that local church did not us the title Christian Church.  I thought Wesleyans were like Jehovah’s Witnesses or something.  A little funny now as I look back on those thoughts. 

After I received Christ as my Savior, and made up my mind to live for Him, I knew that I needed to spiritually take care of my family by starting us in church.  I went with my wife to try the Wesleyan church out.  But I had in mind to go to another church; preferably a First Assembly of God church where I had experienced the Lord before.  Long story short, the Wesleyan pastor was preaching the Word of God correctly during our visit.  I knew this because at that time I had been reading the Bible for quite some time before I sought a church.  That is another story though.  Long story short here; I stayed at this church and later was ordained through Flame before I attended SWU.

As a new Christian, I was on fire with my learning.  God was showing me so much that I was unaware of through His Word.  When I learned that the Wesleyan Church focused on Holiness I realized that God is concerned with His Church being real inside and out.  I love that we emphasize total surrender to Christ.  That is what I did.  None of us like people who pretend; Jesus had a problem with it too. 

Recently, our General Superintendents took part on a listening tour.  They wanted to hear from local church leaders about what we see as needs that we should focus on in the Wesleyan Church.  After all, we are not growing in North America at pace that we would like to see.  I was amazed at the difference of opinions that I heard about what we need to do.  One opinion that caught my was the need for more testimony time during worship service.  My thought, as soon as I heard that, was has been stopping that?  If the Spirit is prompting people to speak, then they should be speaking.  If He is and they are not, they are disobedient.  But we cannot manufacture an experience with our members.

Another opinion caught my ear; someone said that we needed to focus more on missions.  I think we do this pretty well for our size.  Yet, I thought to myself that missions is just what occurs as a result of a group of people, no matter what the denomination is, living for Jesus Christ.  If we love Jesus, then we will make that happen.  Yet, making it happen for the sake of an institution might be another story.  As a collective group who is sold out to Christ we cannot help but make it happen. 

There was a lot of talk about putting an emphasis on compassionate ministries.  I suspect that is being emphasized because of all of the cool books that are being written about this topic right now.  I am for it too.  I believe I am missional too.  Why?  Because I am a follower of Christ.  Compassionate ministries is the result of surrender to Christ.  Here we come to that fine line between works and faith.  Our faith creates our works.  Holiness goes hand in hand with this movement.

What was not talked about by our local leaders, including me because I felt that it would have been unpopular, was our massive effort to do church differently.  Nothing wrong with this if a Body of believers is led by the Spirit to do it differently.  There is a mindset that believes that if we are not playing the right music, dressing a certain way, following the right leadership model, growing a goatee (just kidding about this one; lol ) and trying to duplicate what the “successful” churches are doing, then we are failing as a result of our stubbornness to grow.  The problem is that God is the Lord of the Harvest.  Doing what works at other churches may not work at our local churches.

Here is what the Wesleyan Church needs to do; in my opinion.  First, we need to recommit to Holiness.  We don’t even have a common understanding of this among our local church leaders.  I like complete surrender, which results in love God and others. 

Get back in the fight against sin.  We tend to be so inviting that we tell people it is okay when they confess sin to us.  Let the Spirit do His job!  If He wants them to be sad about it, let them be sad about it.  Don’t tell them it is okay just so they will want to stay in church.

Start making transformation the focal point again.  I did not want to continue to be the person that I was when I got saved.  What I think is happening here is that those who grew up in church are trying to throw out this concept because it seems to them not be psychologically right.  Yet, this is what appeals to those of us who have been without Christ.  This is the Good News in this life. 

Quit trying to remove consequences from bad decisions.  If I make a bad decision, then God is going to teach me through the consequences that of that bad decision.  We need to begin reminding new Christians, and non-Christians, of this concept.  We are too busy trying to paint a Utopia for people so that they will want to attend church. 

Quit being ashamed of our doctrine.  Yes, we do not believe in Eternal Security.  No, it’s not popular.  Yes, we believe that if we die to ourselves that we can overcome sin.  Yes, people disagree with us.  What we need to deal with is, “Are we Wesleyans getting tired of dying to self?”  Do we want the perks that other churches seem to have?  God has blessed those other churches according to what His own will.  Is it our goal to become a large church like others?  Or, is it our goal to be distinct from the world because we live for the Lord?  I know that I am being narrow here but I think it is at least worth thinking about. 

Pastors need to reexamine their eschatology view.  Is the Rapture really a Holiness concept?  Enough said about that.

Our doctrine, when lived out, accomplishes all of these things that I have pointed out because the Spirit calls us to do them.  These things cannot be legislated.  These things have to be God-birthed in each local church. 

In my opinion, Wesleyan pastors need to be required to pursue yearly theological training at least as a refresher.  Local churches need a better emphasis upon discipleship that includes doctrine and theology mixed in with the other great things that are being taught.  We need to “keep the main thing the main thing” as Lee Iacocca once said.  Holiness is what takes us from an institution to a movement again.  

Show me a church that Christ is the Head of, and I will show you a church that is being successful and growing God’s way.  As I post this, I realize that there are things that I may not have said well enough.  I also realize that much of what I said can be debated.  Yet, you have a view from someone who is still new to this because I have not tradition that is influencing me.  I trust it is the Bible and the Holy Spirit.

One final statement.  I am simply questioning our motives.  Everything that I call into question does not mean that it is wrong.  It simply means that I am questioning what motivates us to do church in these different ways.  The Spirit? Need for success?  What?

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