As part of the process of moving to Orlando my wife and I are praying and searching for a new home church. We attended a huge church tonight but left less than ten minutes into the sermon, feeling sick as we drove away.
I wondered: Was the church always that bad or was there a slow decline toward paganism? The church belongs to a major denomination and probably has thousands of members, but what we saw was less like a church and more like a televised event. My wife said it was the first time she’d ever been in a church she considered Pharisaical. Within the first few minutes the pastor as good as said it’s OK for Christians to be normal people and leave the gospel-spreading to special people like the Apostle Paul.
Spreading the Gospel is not a part-time job and it is not just for pastors or “special” people.
One person recently told me I was wrong to want to plant churches in bars because, as he put it, “Christians aren’t supposed to go looking for trouble.” I agree: They’re not supposed to go looking for trouble. But they’re also not supposed to let people or circumstances stop them from proclaiming the Good News of Jesus Christ: “For whoever wants to save their life will lose it, but whoever loses their life for me will find it.” (Matthew 16:25, NIV)
Is someone holding you back from preaching the Word or telling you to only preach their “version” of it? Get away from them ASAP.
Has someone told you that you need a certain education or spiritual gifting before you can share your testimony or talk about your relationship with Jesus? They’re lying to you.
Do you attend a church that doesn’t pass the “sniff test” but are afraid to speak up because the other members seem content? Ask some hard questions and listen to the answers with an open heart. You may be wrong and learn something, or you may be right and learn to get the hell out!