Saturday, October 28, 2006

"Which church did Jesus go to?"

Paul Vieira has written of the wonderful journey that God has led him on in the book, Jesus Has Left the Building. I've never met Paul, but I was introduced to his work by another Paul. I know that all three of us are kindred spirits...

Jesus spoke of the kingdom of God and of new wineskins. How do you bring structure to something like that? Should you even try?

Structure always serves function, and the function of the church is always relationship with God and each other.

What is the structure of the church today?

• it’s somewhere you go
• it happens on a special day of the week
• you have a professional to tell you what to do
• all it requires of you is attendance and fees paid
• there exists a hierarchical command structure
• meetings come before people
• it has committees
• it has programs
• it has a corporate vision
• it has a corporate name
• it segregates itself from other believers
• it is more concerned with structure than content
• quality is sacrificed for quantity

Is that what Jesus imagined for us, or that Paul spoke of below? Is God asking you to leave institutional church in order to live the organic way of faith?

Ephesians 2:19-22
That's plain enough, isn't it? You're no longer wandering exiles. This kingdom of faith is now your home country. You're no longer strangers or outsiders. You belong here, with as much right to the name Christian as anyone. God is building a home. He's using us all—irrespective of how we got here—in what he is building. He used the apostles and prophets for the foundation. Now he's using you, fitting you in brick by brick, stone by stone, with Christ Jesus as the cornerstone that holds all the parts together. We see it taking shape day after day—a holy temple built by God, all of us built into it, a temple in which God is quite at home.

"I have found the paradox,that if you love until it hurts, there can be no more hurt, only more love." Mother Teresa


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