You have been believers so long now that you ought to be teaching others – Hebrews 5:12.
Erwin McManus – pastor of Mosaic Church in Los Angeles – tells the story of a man who had been attending his church for over a month. He told McManus that the teaching met his standards, the music was acceptable, and he was pleased with the children's and youth ministries. He was married, he said, and had several children. But when asked where they were, he explained that he didn’t yet allow them to attend; he wanted to first check out the church to make sure the products and services were in line with what he felt his family needed.
Sounds good, right? But re-think that for a moment. This wasn't about theology; this was all about customer service.
Our culture has been teaching us practically from birth that we are the center of the universe. We evaluate everything on the world’s ability to meet our needs. Some of the best preachers of the Scriptures (by various standards) have had people leave their churches because they're not "being fed." John 10 tells us that we're all the sheep of God, and sheep require a shepherd to feed them. But there must come a time when we become shepherds who feed others. In America today, it is estimated that over 60 percent of Americans are overweight or obese. Could this also be true in the arena of personal spirituality? Are we too much about us getting fed and too little about exercising our faith? (Adapted from An Unstoppable Force by Erwin McManus)
As we continue our series at Redeemer, 50 Days of Ablaze, I challenge you this week to explore what changes you might need to make so that your church involvement is about more than consuming “products and services.” Begin with this prayer: As your disciple, Lord, I recognize I can't live a life of faith and faithful service on my own. Help me to truly connect with the Christian community. Amen.