Monday, October 31, 2011

Making Sense of the Christian Faith #7- The Body of Christ

Why go to church?  This is a big conversation that is being had in our culture today and quite frankly, the (national and local) statistics say, less and less people are choosing to be a part of a local church.

I have to be honest and say that it is a scary conversation for me as a pastor because…well… it is my livelihood.  Maybe more than that it is a question that tugs (and sometimes flat out yanks) at my insecurities:  Is the church relevant to people anymore?  

I don’t mean to start a debate and because I am writing a blog (not a book) I don’t want to go too far into what is a very complex issue.   I also believe that the constant challenge of every church should be this question:   How do we remain faithful to the gospel and connect with people in the culture?  But there is a wonderful image that Lose gives in the book that captures beautifully the reason why we should go to church.  The image is breathing.

“The Holy Spirit” says Lose, “breathes us in so that we can be called and commissioned and breathes us back out into the world to make a difference.  Breathed in, breathed out.”  At church as we worship, as we hear the word of God and we celebrate His sacraments:  we are breathed in by God and we breathe in the Holy Spirit.  And in the process we are brought back to that simple gospel truth that we are beloved children of God, that in Christ we have forgiveness and we are made new so that we can be fully alive.  And then we are breathed out, so that we can go out and experience life the way it was meant to be lived, a life of service to our neighbor, a life of joy. 

And breathing is a rhythm.  It is not too long before we breathe in that we need to breathe out.  It is not too long before we breathe out that we need to breathe back in.  No, it is not to long at all.   In fact, according to God, it is about every 7 days…  

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