Yesterday I had a conversation with someone who attends, and loves, Life Church. She was attempting to play the evangelism card, but of course, that doesn’t amount to much with Life Church folks. I confirmed my faith in Christ and, picking up on verbal cues, noted that I had been ordained to the ministry since 1984. That meant something to her and stopped the conversation from going in a senseless direction.
At one point I mentioned my impression that Life Church is organized as an entertainment franchise. I hastily added that for a lot of folks, that’s enough. Not everyone needs much more than that, and Life Church does it quite well. We aren’t competing for those folks here at Kiln of the Soul parish.
In fact, I’ll be the first to warn you that our target audience is quite small, and likely to remain so in the foreseeable future. The folks who attend Life Church aren’t bad people; they simply aren’t our kind of people. My prophetic ire is aimed at the way our culture has virtually eliminated any serious effort at digging deep into the murky places of the human soul. And when it has attempted to do so, we have ended up with even worse showmanship with all kinds of wacky and bizarre heathen ritual “magic” with Bible verses pasted on the outside. They attack the right problems with the wrong weapons.
Nor do I proclaim that we have the answers, but that we strive to reduce the clutter so that you can find God and His answers.
That appeals to a very narrow audience. Most people are so deeply conditioned to expect everything neatly packaged when they show up, that they cannot imagine the dire necessity of coming face to face with God the way we do here. They simply aren’t ready to build up their faith through a heart-led awareness. Instead, we end up with a lot of people were traumatized by the neatly packaged systems. If not that, then they have at least been carrying around a profound sense of unmet need. That indicates people who were already sensitive to their hearts and didn’t have the language or concept for it.
So this lady is not one of us in the first place, because her heart seems sound asleep. When we discuss the business of the heart with the world around us, it’s not going to ring a bell with a lot of folks. Unless Our Creator has awakened them in some way, our words fall on deaf ears. This is the reality with which we live. At the very least, we have to prepare the ground for such a discussion by demonstrating the power to live that comes from surrendering to the supremacy of the heart.
Most people know that I am some kind of believer. Living by the Law of God in your heart and harvesting the blessings He promised makes it pretty obvious to almost everyone. It’s not that we have no sorrows, but that we handle sorrow differently.