It’s been so busy for me with people and work I have been slow at moving along in this. The temptation is to just let it go and not press in to finish what the Lord started with me. SO………here we go….
2 When Jesus returned to Capernaum several days later, the news spread quickly that he was back home. 2 Soon the house where he was staying was so packed with visitors that there was no more room, even outside the door. While he was preaching God’s word to them, 3 four men arrived carrying a paralyzed man on a mat. 4 They couldn’t bring him to Jesus because of the crowd, so they dug a hole through the roof above his head. Then they lowered the man on his mat, right down in front of Jesus. 5 Seeing their faith, Jesus said to the paralyzed man, “My child, your sins are forgiven.”
Man I can’t tell you how many times I’ve preached this section of Scripture, how many book I’ve read, how many devotions I’ve read, how many small group talks, Sunday school lessons and the list goes on and on. There are so many stories within this very short story, I have been trying to look at these scriptures through the eyes of my life, my past and the church.
As individuals when Jesus is alive within us….when we are resting in Him…….when there is a vessel that has clean hands and a clean heart……you will ALWAYS attract people, maybe at work, at school, in the neighborhood, at the store, wherever you step your foot you are stepping onto holy ground…..you don’t even have to say a word, people know!!! So much “religion” is forced, faked, and screamed to attract people, to “be the man or woman” of God. It’s either real or it’s not……..pretty simple. When it’s real you will draw people to you. If you take this in the context of a church…..well it holds true….a pastor, the leaders and the congregation that is humble, full of the Holy Spirit there Jesus is…….it is that place the Holy Spirit moves in amazing ways. People make up the body of Christ (the church) and it is the people that will draw crowds.
I have been a pastor for over 16 years……..I wanted so desperately to draw people in…….wanted the Holy Spirit to move mightily in our midst. I believed that if we would just preach Him, HIS WORD this would take place………but it is so easy to get caught up in the “church” thing………the latest movements, the latest book, seminar, teaching, preaching, kids ministries, small group ministry, men’s and women’s ministry and the list goes on and on. We end up trying this and that to “grow the church” and why? I must say there is a GREAT deal of pride that goes into that. We want the church that the community is talking about, we want the biggest, nicest, most exciting church in the city, we want to be recognized by our peers, by the community etc etc. I think I’ve made my point.
There are thousands of pastor’s that are doing GREAT work in their churches that nobody will ever hear of. I don’t think that any pastor, leader wants to be this way, it’s the culture of church though……….well in USA it is, I’m not so sure about rest of the world. We fall into these traps. For me, it was a disaster, it ended up becoming all about me……I created this false bubble that I was doing this great work and becoming known in my community…..it happens so slowly you don’t even recognize it happening. In the end God exposed me and I become very well known in my community and beyond. ….. GOD WILL NOT BE MOCKED!!!!
I am convinced that when people find the “real” thing……….they will spend every penny they have to attain it….go to any means and do what ever it takes to reach where Jesus is!!! Even go to the extreme of tearing off a roof top to get to Him. Jesus did not heal the sick man because of his faith it was because of the faith of the men who brought him.
There is so much wrong with the church in our land………but with that said I want to say I LOVE THE CHURCH (body of Christ) Jesus died for her and is coming back for her!!! It’s just so full of “man” but we must never forget we are men, we are not God, so until He comes back the church will be flawed. NOW, I do believe that he will shake the church, change the church, and separate the wheat from the tares before his return……..the church in the near future will NOT look like it does today!!! I am very sick of “Christians” always bad mouthing the church, the doings of the church, the mistakes of the church……..and the movement to “not be a part of the church” is dead wrong………what the church needs is people like me and like you to be filled with the spirit, walking in the Spirit, and teaching the WORD OF GOD!!! Like I’ve said many times, not about the word of God, not about how to raise your children, how to be successful, how to make more money in the name of Jesus, how to name it and claim it, how to live a better life or how to be a better you!!! What people need to know and learn is GOD’S WORD!!!
There church has a PURPOSE in the big picture of this world — it’s all about the Return of Jesus preparing the Wedding!!!
I don’t know if I’ll ever have a chance again or not but if I do my plan is very simple……..
1. Love the Lord with all my heart
2. Love my neighbor
3. Teach God’s WORD……..and God’s word ONLY