October 16, 2007

It’s No Wonder (II)

Yesterday, we looked at the fact that most Christians (especially those in Christian leadership) have no vibrant personal relationships with lost people. There's a bit of a caveat to that in the sense that new Christians are more likely to have personal connections with lost people but over time, most Christians become isolated and withdrawn from the world that they were saved. They busy themselves with church activities. They go to work for Christian organizations. They turn more and more inward until they are completely isolated from a world of people destined to become objects of God's eternal wrath.

With that being the case, is it really any wonder that the news we watch is as bad as it is. Now, understand that I know we live in a sinful fallen world and that the bad news all around us is primarily attributed to sin and to the consequences of our idolatry in the Garden. I know that. I'm not about to say that we can eradicate sin just by getting to know more lost people. But check out this sampling of stories from the last little while:

And that's just a sampling. I have in my RSS feeds literally thousands of news stories of humanity gone awry. And that is what happened when we exchanged the glory of God for an idol. So yes, we are living in a sinful world. Yes, that is what God promised would happen when Adam and Eve screwed it up. Yes, that is why Jesus came to die.


Have you ever thought for a moment about the folks lives around you. I mean each of those stories above, this person was in a town that had churches. This person was in a town that had Christians. This person was in a town that preached Jesus. And have you ever asked yourself the question: I wonder if they knew a Christian? Or better yet: I wonder if a Christian knew them. I mean really knew them. In a way different than just saying hello on the way to the mailbox, did someone who had been transformed by Jesus know who that person was?

Sadly, I think the answer in most cases is probably going to be no. You know why? Because lost stinks. Because lost is dirty. Because lost in dangerous. Because lost is messy. And Christians, once they make their "decision for Christ" spend the rest of their lives trying to avoid all those things. Christians don't like dirty. They don't like dangerous. They don't like unclean. We become Pharisees. We become white-washed tombs. We don't care about the poor. We don't care about the un-educated. We don't care about the hurting. All we care about is how nice our church building is when we show up there on Sunday morning to talk to other people who don't care about lost and we can share our nice cozy gated community lives together.

And I'll tell you the people who are the worst about this are the people who grew up in church all their lives. They seem especially ill-equipped to deal with lost because they have been protected from reality their whole lives. Is it any wonder that the most on-fire people for Jesus and seeing their communities transformed are the people who were converted later in life. Who were saved from pits of hell unimaginable? Have you ever thought about that? And why that is? I know why it is.

Because they know what they have been saved from and they can't imagine anyone else having to endure that for one second longer than they have to. They have a compassion for lost. They have a love for lost. They feel drawn to lost to try and do whatever they can to redeem it.

Have you ever thought about what a difference you might make if you would just make one friendship with a lost person and get involved in their lives? Have you ever thought about what God might use you to do in that person's eternal existence? Have you ever wondered what the glorious Gospel of Jesus Christ could do to a lost soul? Have you ever seen it? Have you ever felt it? Have you ever known it? For most of you, the answer is no…and that's sad. What's even worse, you probably won't do anything to change your current pattern. And you'll never see what the Gospel can really do in the life of a lost person.

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