Some random thoughts and question raised by this post:
Is it holy to feel humbled that people did extraordinary things to come see and hear you?
Devotion is a good, good thing… however we always must raise the question, what are you devoted to? What do your actions say you are devoted to?
The stage mentality of the Evangelical Christian circus always, always, always puts one man and/or woman in the spotlight. How is it fair to label it “God’s work” when it’s blaitently a matter of fame?
To be fair, growing churches are sometimes a true sign of people hungering for the Gospel and flocking to a place where it is being activle proclaimed. However, when the boast is about people traveling in crazy weather conditions, through many cities (with Christ centered churches in said cities), with insane travel times, just to come and see the preacher “live”, how is this a boast in Christ alone?
It is good and right to know that there are people dedicated to a God breathed vision that binds a missional congregation/community together. Often, extreme occurrences (such as weather) truly reveals who is about mission vs those about social church. Is is good to see these things. But no one should confuse missional dedication and investment with fascination and enthrallment in a personality. Sometimes, the line is very fine.
So, one sunday, 80 people show up for your service. Attendance is down from the 2000 range. You still preach. Right on, good, and Amen. The next sunday, five people show up. Do you still preach to them, or do you minister the gospel to them? In other words, are you about your production, lituragy, performance, method, and program? Or are you dedicated to a mission, completly willing to trash your plans and fly by the Holy Ghost, flexable and accepting of circumstances that might not involve shinning your start a bit brighter?
A freak snow/ice storm hits a town completely unprepared for these conditions. It’s Sunday. Do you:
- have church as planed?
- contact your congregation the best you can, asking if they are ok?
- Go out and help your neighbor get there car out of the snow drift they are stuck in?
- Call of service, exhort the congregation to meet with family, friends, and neighbors and trust that God will still work with out you or your sermon?
(Edit: imonk has some thought about Driscol’s thoughts here. Worth the read.)