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the Pale Melanesian » Blog Archive » priorities

priorities


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I’m looking out my window at work, and there’s a church there. It’s one of (if not the) biggest ones in town. They have a pair of big, 10-story-high cranes out there. Two men are in a bucket hanging from one, and the other one is lifting away the spire once the men disconnect it. There is also a field between here and there that used to be grass. It is now becoming a parking lot for that same church.

Yes, the spire was bent, and yes, it bugged me. I’ll be glad it’s fixed. How much do the cranes cost? Maybe the insurance is covering the cost. I hope so. I’m sure it’s not covering the parking lot. I don’t know how much that costs. I see the benefits of having adequate facilities, and maintaining them. I’m just questioning the priorities.

It seems to me that large churches always seem to have some construction project under way, that will revolutionize their “ministry”. If it only serves to make life a little cushier for those who attend the church, what’s the point? There’s more to being a church than having a good building. How about going beyond your comfort zone and actually making a difference in people’s lives? You can say all the great philosophical stuff you like, but to really change people, you have to touch them where they live, in ways they can feel. How about going and painting their house, or mowing their yard? Maybe you could carry someone’s groceries out to the car and tell them, “This is what it’s really about.” That’s what Jesus did. He saw someone with a need, and he didn’t preach to them. He fixed their problem, and then told them what he was about. That way, their problem wasn’t in the way and distracting them, and his message had some credibility.

(This is a good example of the “pointing hand has three fingers pointing back at yourself” situation. I like my comfort zone. I have my life under (chaotic) control. I know most of the people I deal with day to day, and that’s fine with me.)

One Response to “priorities”

  1. Bettina Says:

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    We’ve only been to our new church a couple months but we’ve already decided to become members. Why? because they see needs in their local community & go after them. They even have a ministry where they make delicate shrouds for stillborn babies! They *do* have a new building (1996) BUT it’s a multi-purpose gym, NOT a magnificent stained-glass chapel with a steeple. The church is used daily, by all sorts of people and activities, religious or not. Our only regret is that we didn’t find this place 2 years ago when we first got here :)