Saturday, July 12, 2008

Strength in Numbers

.....or a lack thereof.....

Last Saturday, I had the pleasure of hearing Dr. Ajai Lall speak. Dr. Lall and his wife Indu, are the founders of Central India Christian Mission and have helped over 150,000 Asian Indians make decisions for Christ.

He is a faithful follower of Christ, in spite of the shocking persecution of Christians in India. He recounts tales of torture, beatings and rape which brothers and sisters in Christ have endured while delivering the Word to those who have never heard it. My heart and prayers go out to these brave people who share the love and saving grace of our Lord. Equally, I pray earnestly for those who have such hatred in their hearts that they seek to destroy those who would share God's love.

What really disturbed me last Saturday was the lack of participation by our congregation. Granted, it was 4th of July weekend and he spoke at our Valley Ranch campus; however, out of 2,000+ people in the congregation, there were only 50-70 who took the time to hear him speak. How immensely sad.

Here is a couple who have devoted their entire lives to Christ. It's a mission our church supports. Yet 97% of our congregation could not be bothered to hear what he had to say. This isn't a condemnation of my church, but merely a comment about all of us who profess to be Christians yet seem content to let the Great Commission pass by. Don't get me wrong, I love my church and have experienced immense growth in my walk with Christ. Granted I still feel like I am not connected, but maybe that's my fault (and a subject for a different post). However, when you say "mission" a lot of people are quick look the other way.

I think about what other people endure in order to accept Jesus and realize how incredibly blessed I am to have been born here. There are people who have never heard the Gospels, yet we live where they are readily available. We experience no hardships in order to read them, yet making it to church on Sundays is a pain. Taking time for a Monday evening for bible study requires too much commitment. Read the bible daily: why should I when I get snippets on Sunday? Isn't it enough to say I am a Christian and watch a televangelist? Sometimes I think we want a "convenience church." Church - where you can have it your way.

We attend, we give, we profess faith and love, but we can't be inconvenienced to take an hour on a Saturday of a holiday weekend to listen to someone who is serving Christ in a way we would never dream of doing or in a place we would never dream of going.

Wouldn't it have been wonderful for 150 people to show up at the Valley Ranch campus, pushing the occupancy limits of the building; giving props to Dr. Lall for the incredible work he does in India.

1 comment:

Trevor DeVage said...

thanks for this post and I agree 100%. It has become easy for many of our people to simply get THEIR fix an hour or so a week. That is what we are striving for in Roanoke is that people would not be able to just come to a service, but that will come to BE service. I am sorry from the bottom of my heart that you don't feel connected yet...i think I kind of wear that one on my sleeve. Know that I long for your connection with our new campus and love doing life along side of you.