Whatever it takes

I came across a picture today of a church. In the picture were several leaders of the church, along with two youth of the church. The elders, or deacons, or pastors, whatever, were dressed in suits. Ties. Mirror polished shoes. Nothing wrong with that right? The youth were dressed… well, not like that. All were white. Caucasian. A sign in the background said “whatever it takes.” Really…?

In our churches, across America, we face the single most segregated time of the week on Sunday mornings.

Why? A sign that says “whatever it takes” is just lip service, if the body of ANY church does not reflect the cultural environment of the city that church is found in. Really…? Yes. Really. What is going to happen in this world where people hang signs in churches that say one thing, and then the actions of the church say something else? The church, the validity of the gospel, is meaningless to a world that cannot see Christ’s love and personal sacrifice reflected in His church. Does one culture say “They are unlike us, why should we worship with them?”, while another culture says, “They have never wanted to associate with us before. Why now?”

Imagine if Jesus and His disciples thought that way. Please understand… I’m not trying to alienate, just illuminate.

Proverbs 27:18 and 19 He who tends a fig tree will eat its fruit, and he who looks after his master will be honored. As water reflects a face, so a man’s heart reflects the man.

So a church’s face reflects the heart.  My son Caleb (http://su.pr/2czhTL) is going to grow up in a world different than mine. Where the lion lays beside the lamb. Where race creates culture rather than division. Where Jesus looks on His church and says… “There go my people, after my own heart.” Today I find myself saddened by the thought that there are some churches that do whatever it takes, and encouraged that there are other churches that do WHATEVER IT TAKES, not just to create cultural unity, but to reach anyone that God would would have saved by Grace.

As for me, I intend to be the man that helps bring the vision to life. I WILL STAND… with my face to the 6 steps left, and not the 94 I have just walked.


4 thoughts on “Whatever it takes

  1. Yes, there is so much more to this than lip service. I’ve heard it said ‘what’s posted on the wall (mission) should be going on down the hall’. My husband and I are a ‘bi-racial’ couple, which, for our foster son’s generation is not so taboo, but we still get treated differently – even in ministry, at times. When he started out, was told by leaders to ‘minister to your people’ – ‘multiculturalism and diversity in church won’t work, we’ve done it…’. 12 years later, here we are 🙂 Would like to hear your thoughts on this too – feel free to check out the blog (link to that topic below). So glad to come across you in twitter-land!

  2. This is true in so many ways- I am bi-racial; but live in an all white family. I have cousins that are bi-racial- and we never really make a big deal about it. In church, race isn’t really an issue- Our church is multi-cultural and we celebrate that! however, I know that in most church’s it may be an issue- and in our church if it is an issue- it’s normally backwards. I’ll explain- We had an African American lady join our church with her children- she attended for less than a year then all of a sudden disappeared- when asked about it- she said “I just need to get to a place where MY people are. I need to worship in a place where people are like me.”

    I found that highly offensive, personally. because here there is a church that doesn’t hold race against anybody but openly celebrates and welcomes diversity- and yet it’s not good enough. She didn’t want to stay around long enough to help create a culture of diversity- she was selfish and chose to identify with her race MORE than her identity as a Christian- and that’s where I think alot of people mess up. We are Christians first- regardless of our race/ethnicity. We should be identifying with our place in the body of Christ before we identify with our place in our segregated minds.

    Good post!

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