Photo by Ismael Paramo on Unsplash
As Christians, do we spread the love God, or do we keep it to ourselves? Are we guilty of being selective as to who we’ll share the Gospel with? Do we exclude others from our church circle? Are we guilty of being what Rob Cook calls Zombie Churches? You know, churches that look alive on the outside, but are dead on the inside.
Rob has a heart full of compassion for the lost. I’ve been blessed each time I’ve heard him speak. In one keynote at the Colorado Christian Writers Conference, Rob mentioned many soul-searching thoughts. I’ve listed a few of them here.
Jesus hung out with sinners. We don’t want them in our churches.
Jesus loved his enemies. We boycott ours.
Jesus commanded his followers to make disciples. We make church goers.
Jesus said we would be known for what we’re for. We’re know for what we stand against.
In Rob’s talk he challenged us not to worry with figuring out WWJD — What Would Jesus Do? Instead, Rob asked us to DWJD — Do What Jesus Did.
Rob gave an illustration of how some churches look to seekers that has never left me, even though I heard it years ago.
Suppose you are drowning and see a lifeboat. You struggle to pull yourself into the boat. As you get ready to climb inside, you notice it is filled with vipers and haters. What would you do? Probably throw yourself into the water and take your chances right back in the middle of all the stuff you’ve been trying to escape. Safe haven? Hardly.
What about our churches? Are they filled with vipers and haters?
Closer to home, what about us? Viper? Hater?
Instead of telling someone they are not wanted inside our churches because of the way they look, where they’re from, number of tattoos or piercings, how about we throw open the doors, get out into the streets, welcome one and all, and show the love the Father has shown us.
As the body of Christ, we should spread the love of God, not keep it to ourselves. How are we doing with that?
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Later, Matthew invited Jesus and his disciples to his home as dinner guests, along with many tax collectors and other disreputable sinners. But when the Pharisees saw this, they asked his disciples, “Why does your teacher eat with such scum?” When Jesus heard this, he said, “Healthy people don’t need a doctor—sick people do.” Then he added, “Now go and learn the meaning of this Scripture: ‘I want you to show mercy, not offer sacrifices.‘ For I have come to call not those who think they are righteous, but those who know they are sinners.” Matthew 9:10-13 (NLT)
You can find my May Inspire a Fire post here. Please stop by and read it.
I wish you well.
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Thank you for sharing these thoughts about our churches from Rob Cook. they are unfortunately too often true.
I’ve been to the Colorado Christian Writer’s Conference before and am planning to attend the virtual one this year! Are you attending? Teaching? If so I’d love to connect virtually somehow. Not sure how it will work at this conference.
Hi Kathy. How sweet of you to consider me CCWC faculty-worthy. Because last year’s conference was COVID canceled, and the faculty was already in place, last year’s faculty remained the same for this year’s virtual conference. Marlene’s looking into the possibility of having me on faculty next year, though. Maybe you can let her know you think I should be on faculty. 🙂 Unfortunately, I won’t be attending this year. I hope you enjoy the conference. Maybe we’ll see each other in person next year at CCWC. It would be great to connect.