Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Being a radical...

So recently I began reading David Platt's book, Radical. I'm probably about 60ish pages in and everything that I know and hold to has been put in a brand new perspective. Think about this. In the book he talks about a time right before he was going on a mission trip to Sudan. He was reading a BAPTIST newspaper and the headlines caught his eye. One headline was about a church celebrating their 23 million dollar new sanctuary. The other headline was talking about how the baptist were raising money for 350,000 Sudanese refugees. Naturally he got excited seeing this, especially since he was heading out to Sudan. He read on in the article, much shorter than the one about the 23 million dollar sanctuary, to find that the amount raised for the refugees was 5,000 dollars. Only 5,000 dollars for 350,000 men, women, and children. Puts a lot into perspective.
This story has been stuck in my mind for days now. I keep going back to it. It hits me close to home, I guess. Before I go on, let me say this. I don't think there is anything wrong with a growing church and a big building, just to be clear. But I attend a church thats growing. So much we have outgrown our sanctuary and we are almost finished building a new one. It's great to see God's hand working within my church, but I almost felt convicted at reading David Platt's story. I feel like we put so much emphasis on numbers and growth and state of the art worship centers that we lose focus on the needs of this lost and dying world. We can't reach out to Sudanese refugees by sitting in our cool air conditioned buildings in our comfy chairs with our hands underneath us. We have to think about the people with needs.
I am blessed. I go to a church that is growing, BUT it also has a heart for the lost world. I just pray that we as christians as a whole, forget the numbers game and focus on something a bit more important: the billions of people that have never heard the gospel. We are called in Matthew to GO and make disciples. Are we making disciples or are we more worried about what color the church is painted or the color of the carpet. It's great to have a place to worship as a church family, but please don't lose sight of what is important.
I hope I worded this all right. I got a little offended when I read the book, but I quickly realized it wasn't me taking offense. It was the Holy Spirit convicting my heart. Sometimes I get a little proud because of our church growth and our building, but God has brought me back down to size. In closing, what is important to you? The multi million dollar worship center or the Sudanese refugees. Because that's what it comes down to.