Welcome to Marmee's Pantry

Welcome to Marmee's Pantry

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Word-Filled Wednesday ~#119~ In as Much as it Depends on You...

"If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone." ~Romans 12:18

"Let no debt remain outstanding, except the continuing debt to love one another, for he who loves his fellowman has fulfilled the law . . . And do this, understanding the present time. The hour has come for you to wake up from your slumber, because our salvation is nearer now than when we first believed." ~Romans 13:8, 11
I don't even know how to begin this devotion

It seems that the Church of God is warring with itself and it. is. ugly. 

I see churches that, evidently, have long-standing, generational sin within it's walls that has never been dealt with and it eats at the congregation like a cancer ~ a sin cancer ~ until it is dealt with, with fasting and prayer. Does anyone care enough to DO that anymore? To recognize that there is something that has been within the walls that has lingered and festered and grown because it has never been dealt with? Are you too proud, or afraid, to get down on your knees to repent and pray?  "But this kind does not go out except by prayer and fasting." (Matt. 18:21)

I see walking wounded leaving long-loved church bodies because of rumor, accusation and, again, sin not being dealt with. I see precious Christian brothers and sisters giving up and leaving churches they have happily ministered at for years, because they have lovingly TRIED to address wrong they have seen, pride from certain cliques, and they have been made "the bad guys" by those who don't know, or don't WANT to know, the whole story . . . or who are guilty.

I see brothers and sisters trying to fit into new churches but "the old guard" pats them on the head and basically tells them to, "just sit down, pay your tithe and enjoy the show. We'll take care of everything. There's really no place for new people, all our niches are filled, we're happy as we are."

I see churches whose numbers are dwindling ~ where there's so much grey hair in the pews that the 40-something's would be considered the Youth Group. Why? Maybe it's those 7 last words of a dying church: "We've never done it that way before!" And in their rigidness, they wonder why young families do not stay; and each death of one of their members is another step closer to closing their doors forever. 

I see the 80-20 ratio (20% of the people do 80% of the work) turning into 90-10 and it is wearing out those who work so hard at our churches without a break. Is everyone too proud to help? Is it beneath you to empty the trash cans, sweep a floor, pick up left-over bulletins, welcome a new visitor? 

I know we hate looking so deeply at ourselves, and I HATE writing this, but LISTEN CHURCH . . . TIME IS RUNNING OUT! STOP back-biting your brothers and sisters in Christ. Bind up the wounds within and then look to the fields outside your walls. The harvest is ripe (Luke 10:2) ~ we are ruining the attractiveness of God and His people to the outside world. (Titus 2:10[b]) The outside world looks at us and says that they "don't need Jesus if THAT is what His people are like." We are falling right into the hands of the enemy with so much in-fighting and laziness. 

As much as it grieves my heart to see this going on in various churches, think how much it grieves the Holy Spirit

Lord, please have mercy, have mercy, have mercy on us. Please forgive us for where we have failed You in our pride. We repent of our back-biting, untruths, uninclusiveness and laziness. Help us to live in peace with each other. Make us bold in the preaching and living out of Your Word ~ not in our pride ~ and let us shine our light for You. In Jesus' precious Name, Amen.

Blessings from Ohio . . . Kim<><

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