One would be hard pressed to find a serious Christian unfamiliar with John’s warning to the Laodicean church in Revelation 3:16…
“So then because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spue thee out of my mouth.”
….yet for all intents and purposes, much of the modern church has built it’s entire theological premise on institutionalized mediocrity in the guise of ‘balance’. Let’s face it…the middle is the place for cowards and sheep. Our commission is to confess, possess, and advance the kingdom, not feather our nest in a safe spot along the way. Motion is our calling… progress is our calling… and yes, fighting is our calling! The enemy knows our vulnerability to the temptation of a conflict free life, and all along the way he tries to exploit that weakness. I doubt any pastor with anything approaching an anointing on his life hasn’t greeted a Monday or two with the carnal desire to chuck it all and be the world’s best church member, but after a moment or two of nape-of-the-neck comeuppance, he gets back in the fight. The problem I’m dealing with is not one of occasional discouragement, but one of visional misalignment. Church shouldn’t be in the business of making our own journey more comfortable, but more accountable, and it’s people more available. The margins is our calling, not a threat to it, and too much time – even at the feet of Jesus – is counter to the purpose of the rapture’s delay. Eventually Mary got up and got on with it. The calling of Calvary is to fight, not hide. ‘Sanctuary’ was never intended to be a place to hide FROM the world, but to prepare to minister TO the world. Our times of refreshing from the Lord are meant to be preparation for times of exertion and depletion in His purpose – not some sort of reward for inherently deserving spiritual silver spoons. To break it down, everyone knows that the most consistent flavor of a good ole baked ‘tater is right in the middle, but the best nutrition is at and near the skin that is often discarded in favor of that benign, chive bespackled butter puddle in the bland middle. Similar metaphors abound, but my point is that down time — conflict-free seasons with hands full of purpose — should be more like pit-stops than the winner’s circle. To be motivated otherwise is to fall prey to the pitiful and dangerous inclination to make lemonade instead of getting something better than lemons in the first place. Authentic Christianity demands that we not simply try to find balance in all things, but that we be moved by the right things while rejecting the wrong (fight the good fight of faith). Heaven awaits when the battle is won, not just when we decide that it’s someone else’s turn to fight. The simple truth is that there are multitudes that do not know Christ, and their numbers are growing faster than the church is – we’re losing ground! When we’ve had our fill, let’s saddle up and head on out to that ragged edge where the Kingdom is advanced and the good news of Calvary is more than just a memory. Tell someone NEW!
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