(This post has not been edited. Forgive any errors. I’m a busy dude.)
I just can’t shake it. I’ve tried. Doesn’t work.
Every single time I read any 1 of the 4 Gospels then look at my life or look at the church I get confused. I am a professing Christian and so are many of you, but the gap between our Christianity and our Christ is far too huge.
Somehow, we’ve reconciled that Jesus, as a rule of thumb, walked on water, gave sight to the blind, rose the dead, healed leprosy, fed 10,000 people with a dinner for 2, challenged evil to its face, and then told us to do the same thing (John 14:12) to mean something abstract that requires us to do none of the above. How did that happen?
The gap between our Christianity and our Christ is getting to be so large that Jesus and Christianity too often look like they have little to do with one another. When I share this thought with Christians they ALMOST ALWAYS agree with me, but it’s as if we are addicted to Christianity in spite of Jesus.
All the time, I meet lifelong Christians who tell me they no longer want to self identify (on Facebook or elsewhere) as Christians because they don’t think it adequately describes their faith.
This week I started following all of you that are following me on Twitter and I saw a trend that just bothered me. Without fail, as I would look at the pastors and Christian leaders that follow me, the word that professional Christians most often used to describe what they do for a living was…drumroll…
Don’t get me wrong, Jesus spoke and we should all speak truth to power, but we have been called to do so much more than speak. I can’t help but feel like we are all living drastically far beneath our God given potential. Jesus declared that his followers would do what he did and even go on to do greater things and so we purchased bigger sound systems and more mics. I don’t get it.
While we speak and speak and speak, evil roams the earth, children are bought and sold here, there, and everywhere, people literally starve to death, clean water is scarce, acid is thrown in women’s faces, orphans die in orphanages, and few if any wrongdoers around the world have one bit of fear when they think about the people of God. Evil runs rampant on our watch.
We are the children of God! God hears our prayers and cares! Jesus said his followers would do what he did and even GREATER things!
But I agree with Francis Chan. Christians in 2011 are like supercharged race cars designed with speed and power in mind only being used to go back and forth to the grocery store! That would be a fun failure.
We are living beneath our designed purpose. It’s just not right. We have been given supernatural power but we are pretty much living as slightly better versions of our pre-Christian selves.
Hear my heart. I am not pointing a finger here. I am a part of the problem. I don’t want to be, but I am.
For the past 9+ months or so I have been on a rocky journey of self-discovery attempting to determine how to shake out of this Christ-less Christianity and it’s not as easy as I thought it would be, but we must make the effort.
Are we addicted to Christianity or are we determined to follow Jesus in spite of it?