i don’t assign myself by the church I attend. Yes, I’m going to a United Methodist Church currently, but that doesn’t mean that I’m 100 of the Methodist beliefs. I was raised in Southern and Texas Baptist Churches and believe me when I say I totally don’t 100% prescribe to their beliefs at all!
But I don’t have to fully believe in, agree with, and even understand the full dynamics of a denomination to have faith in God, believe Christ came, died, and rose again to save us, and that without my faith I wouldn’t have a shot in hell at making it through tomorrow, much less today!
Where we attend now, we do because my wife and I both are comfortable enough there to enjoy worship, but challenged enough to grow. Our kids are loved, cared for in prayer and more, and are learning the foundational biblical stories we all need to begin to seek out and create our own faith and beliefs.
And that’s where we should all be. Methodist, Baptist, Lutheran, Church of Christ, Anglican, 7th Day, and all the countless other denominations don’t really matter because when it comes down to the truth of the matter, there isn’t one of them who is 100% right in how they interrupt the Word of God!
Faith is dynamic
I was sitting in our church the other day when we had a glitch in the sound system and schedule and everyone started to panic and grumble and I couldn’t help but laugh because two different men literally said, “We never done that before!”
Are you kidding me? The God who brings you from darkness to light, from the grips of evil to love, who changes drug addicts to leaders, who helps homosexuals come to repentance and become examples of heterosexual love, who wiped the earth clean with a flood, ripped time in half with when His son walked the earth, and has given us a written account of the new Heavens and Earth to come can’t do something in our lowly church service by switching Mics or leaving out a part of the standard worship service line up?
If God wasn’t a God of change, Saul would not have become Paul, the church would be dead, and I would likely have a completely different outlook on life, as would you!
So lets embrace change, not for the sake of change, but because God needs us to, in the words of the great DC hero, “to become someone else, to become something else!”
Recent news by the AP has shed light on the coming split in the United Methodist Church. A split for the same reasons that we’ve watched the Baptist divide and divide again, the Lutherans, Anglicans, and almost every other Protestant religion go through time-and-time again. Our country was founded because a group wanted to split off from their church and feel free to worship in their own way.
The culture of the world is changing and our church, our beliefs must change with it. And as we begin the process of settling on other worlds and exploring space, let me just tell you…hang on tight folks!
If the revelations of seen when the “New World” was “discovered” are any indications, a multi-world society will bring all sorts of new headaches to the world’s religions. And when we meet the first non-humans out there…everything we know and everything we believe will be rocked to the core! (And yes I said when!)
Change is coming. Locally to meet the needs of the next generation of believers, regionally to meet the ever-changing pulse of society, and world-wide as the geo-political scene changes with time.
Meeting the challenge
So what do we do?
- Don’t Panic! There isn’t anything we can do about something that might happen next year, nor is there anything we can do to fix the issue causing a minor change today. Just let it play out. Shifting the schedule, changing the physical location of a speaker or singer might be just the thing God needs to touch a life, today! A denomination splitting might be just what is needed to stop the petty bickering that would keep someone from finding the love of Christ in their own lives.
- Pray constantly. Seriously, if you aren’t praying over the local, regional, national and world-wide body of believers you should be. And right behind it you should pray for our local, county, state, national and world leaders as well.
- Never stop getting up. We took our kids skating for the first time and my 4yo daughter began to cry because she “kept falling all the time.” I looked at her and said so what, you haven’t stopped getting up have you? We are an imperfect people, we will fall, fail, and mess-up, but that doesn’t matter. It’s what we do next that everyone will remember. So never stop getting up! Never stop reaching for the light of God’s love. Never stop seeking Grace!