Feed (all) my sheep


Which answers my original discomfort.

“There is an unwritten rule that church people should ignore homeless folx (sic) on the one hand and prophets on the other.” I don’t see it as that. I see it as this: “Why after more than a year of attending there am I not better connected?”

And – I think if that was the challenge: being better connected – then conversations about the homeless would happen naturally – perhaps the changes you seek would happen more easily – and all without the need to force others to change (without them understanding why they should).

“Why after more than a year of attending there am I not better connected?”

I think is the challenge in all churches.

My comment (still under moderation as I write here) under a series of thought-provoking posts by Agent X – this one: “Stinking Up Church From My Perspective”

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“Why after more than a year of attending there am I not better connected?”

I have heard that comment with many different numbers (the largest was 25 years of attending the same church).  I have felt the same thing in all churches I have attended.

And I think of Paul’s letters to the “new churches” which make up a big chunk of the New Testament.

How his focus is not with material stuff (other than when it gets in the way of spiritual stuff). How he dismisses the rattle-tattle and tittle-tattle (the persecution and hardship – the gossip and arguing).  How he zeroes in on “How is your spiritual health?”   How his concern is for the health of a church’s “spiritual connection” deep down (where material stuff cannot get).

My own experience of churches is that there is always a hungry percentage.  The percentage who want to connect spiritually in that deep down place.  Who feel frustrated by the social tittle-tattle and religious rattle-tattle.  But who have come to accept that this is as good as it will get – and if they stick with it they might just … (but usually end up lowering their sights).  Who seek house groups, prayer groups, study groups, fellowship groups … groups that will feed.

Groups that will provide spiritual sustenance not found in the Sunday performance worship assembly.

And there are many who do not seek that feeding.  Many who are sustained and maintained by the weekly assembly and in-between good works, meetings, gatherings and “church life”.

Yet the church life I see in the New Testament “new churches” is what I would call a cult nowadays.  A sharing of material possessions.  An uncaring approach to material wealth.  A pitch-in and get-on-together living as a result of spiritual health.

I wonder whether we do it back-to-front nowadays.

That if our material wealth is okay, we assume our spiritual health must be as well.  That if our ability to give a bit of our own material wealth allows us to feed some of the poor, give to the overseas missions, contribute to the committee meetings, organise the buildings maintenance, contribute to the Sunday services, reach out to the groups using the church buildings, volunteer for this or that … that the “material stuff and good works” is evidence of our spiritual health.

For many that may be enough. But I know that for a percentage it is not. I see and hear that in every church I have seen or heard about.

“Why after more than a year of attending there am I not better connected?”

I wonder if we really do feed (all) His sheep.

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One thought on “Feed (all) my sheep

  1. Pingback: The we are as one | Just me being curious

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