Jesus came to Church?

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I was visiting tonight with a friend. Our conversation turned to church (as it normally seems to in my house). We discussed what church is like. She complained about falling asleep in church. I laughed, I think that is so true. (She tells the truth bluntly and unashamedly–as we all should.)

Except, when I was growing up there was no falling asleep when my Dad preached. He was very lively. His voice would rise and fall as his passion for God’s word streamed from his lips. Occasionally, he would slap the pulpit, waking everybody up, as if they were sleeping to begin with.

Why do our churches sleep? Not just the ones nodding off during the sermon. But the hearts of the people, going through the motions, as if God is not even real?

But HE is REAL

What if Jesus was at church Sunday morning in service? Would it be any different?
I can picture people mingling in toward the double doors to find their seat (as if it was labeled with their name). They gaze forward, only to catch a glimpse of a radiant white robe. Staring, they realize this dark headed man has nail holes in his hands and feet. They realize this man is Jesus!
In quiet conviction some retreat back through the open doors.
Some of the more holy, quit wispering in the pews about sister so and so and her teenage boy. Silence strickens them as they bow their heads and pretend to pray. Others, whose faces reveal a look of disbelief,search out the pastor to inquire about todays festivities. “What entertainment could the youth group have in store for us today?” they ask.

How would the service be like?

Would behavior be reserved, in holy reverance, with each pew sitter with straight backs looking straight ahead with no thought or mention of what the neighbor in the next pew is doing? Would notes be passed around the young people’s group? Would everyone sing along to the chosen songs with gripe or complaint?
Would the order of service be as normal? Pray, Sing, Pray, Offering, Preach…and in some churches…pray again?

Would I act any different than I normally do?

I can almost imagine the scene. But one thing I know for sure…The Glory of God would fill that auditorium. The tangible presence of my God and King, indescribable, peaceful and joyful all at the same time. Undeniable presence of the Holy Spirit.
It would not be quiet!
David danced before the Lord.
Trumpets, tamborines, harps all played music loudly for the Lord.
People shouted in triumph.
Acts 2:6 Outsiders heard a loud sound and came running. They heard praising and worshipping in different languages. They thought the people were drunk!

All this does not sound common in today’s churches. We are more civilized and proper.
Or, have we just came so far away from what God intended…to a non-real life of a Christian pew sitter? Go through the motions like a good little girl. Tradition says we must. Mother says I must. My friends will be there.

Is there more than this?
Yes, I am here to proclaim to you the gospel of Christ. Everywhere Jesus went multitudes swarmed him. They pressed in through the crowds just to see him. Many searched hard to find him so themselves or a loved one could be healed. Demons fled in terror. Hearts were mended. Minds were quieted from doubt and fears.
Real love abounded from him as if you could soak it up like a sponge. Forgiveness and reconciliation were given. Restoration was eminent.

Have our hearts grown cold and calloused?
Unable to feel the tangible presence of God? Unable to feel love? Unable to give it freely? Do we even recognize it anymore?
What is love anyway?
It’s not in the gossip or the back stabbing. It’s not in the harsh looks or the judgement. It’s not in the selfishness. Love is not in the note passing or the penciled in “I love you” from the desperate teenager.
Love is allowing God fill your heart with forgiveness, patience, understanding, and mercy to overflowing capacity that if flows out of our very being into our actions and our words out to others. It reconciles the family, the friend.

Has “Church” been reduced to pretty singing, organ playing, and stirring sermons, at best?

I refuse to think that is what God intended. I read the New Testament and see a live, thriving, loving church where miracles were an everyday occurence. People served each other unselfishly. Helped the poor, visited the sick, clothed the naked and fed the starving.
Early church goers were so full of Jesus that it didn’t just show 1 day a week or maybe even Wednesday. It was everyday in their homes, at work and on the streets. When they arrived at the scheduled place of meeting (church) they were so prayed up, studied in the Word that God just seemed to pour out of them onto any needy, hurting soul within earshot.

Acts 2:17 NIV “In the last days, God says, I will pour out my Spirit on all pepole. Your sons and daughters will prophesy. Your young men will see visions, your old men will dream dreams. Even on my servants, both men and women, I will pour out my Spirit in those days, and they will prophesy.”

This is a promise from Jesus himself to anyone who believes in him.

John 14:12 NLT “I tell you the truth, anyone who believes in me will do the same works I have done, and even greater works, because I am going to be with the Father.

And He never changes

Hebrews 13:8 NIV Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever.

This is what He does…

Luke 4:18 NIV “The Spirit of the Lord is on me, because he has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners and recovery of sight for the blind, to set the oppressed free,

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Prayer:

Heavenly Father, renew the sight of your people to see who you really are as the God and Creator of all things. As real and available. Take off the blinders that hinder the truth. Set your light to shine in the darkness of every unholy place of our hearts. Reveal your love to us. Help us find the REAL church that you ordained to heal the sick, proclaim your goodness and share your love with the world. A place of healing for the wounded hearts and deliverance for the bound up soul.
Set your churches free to serve you without hindrance or reservation. In freedom and in spirit and in truth. Reveal the truth to the leaders. Cleanse our hearts from unholy things. Take out our hardened hearts and replace with one on fire and passionate for you. Give us the ability to dance before you as David danced so we can say “I will be even more undignified then this!” in the presence of my King..to serve and worship HIM without selfish desires.
We seek you with our whole hearts. Show us your REAL! Not just a figment to talk about on Sundays. But to KNOW you.
In Jesus Name! I pray for all the people that read this to be stirred. I pray for all the churches that proclaim your name to be free. I proclaim that freedom now. Send your Warring angels to fight for your churches, for your people, for the bound up in chains, for the addicted, for the hurting. Demons must flee at the mention of your name in faith. In Jesus Name, Amen.

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Akiane Kramarik – A Child Prodigy painted this picture of Jesus.

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2 Responses to Jesus came to Church?

  1. Amen! Standing with you in prayer for the real Body and Bride of Christ to be revealed. God bless you!

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