No, I haven’t lost my mind. I am fully aware of the last article I wrote with a contradictory title.
As some of my faithful detractors have pointed out, the church has been under attack since the beginning. Cults, sects, governments, other religions, nonbelievers, etc.
Yes, the church has survived.
The problem, in my mind, is that all those previous oppressors were unable to crack the foundation. They caused damage, but not enough to bring it down.
I have a simplistic view on faith. Basically, my entire understanding of theology and Christianity comes down to this…
“God is love. God created humanity so He would have someone to love. We exist to have relationship with God and each other. Relationship is the foundation of the universe.”
I support that with the words Christ spoke when asked about the highest commandment. He basically said to love God and love each other.
I support that by reminding everyone that His mission was simple and direct; find and redeem His bride.
I support that with virtually every word He spoke, including the words from the cross and the last words before ascension.
For those who don’t know my story, you can’t understand why this is such a big deal to me.
I was the young and zealous guy who buried himself in the church and ministry. I was the one who got off track and lost his focus. My attitude went dark, I was lost. My purpose eluded me as I struggled and worked for countless hours, on countless missions.
I literally couldn’t see the forest for the trees. My attitude was so far off base that I began to believe that my family was holding me back from my ministry. I had missed my purpose and destiny while pursuing my purpose and destiny.
Everything that my soul craved and my heart desired was wrapped up inside the family I already had. I found myself, by becoming the man I had already vowed to be, when I married my wife. Once my own family became my first ministry, everything made sense.
Without blaming anyone, the church can rebuild the foundation the same way we did.
Simple formula. Strong nations are built on strong communities. Strong communities are built on strong families. Strong families are built when children to have strong examples of love and respect.
The kids need to see something in their own family that is powerful enough to impact them to want the same. Our kids need to see what it means to love, honor and cherish or they will never understand. If our children are not being offered good choices, they choose their future based on what is available.
Preach, teach, evangelize, minister, expound the scriptures and decipher prophesy to your heart’s content. But, if we don’t start to develop Christlike human relationships, starting with our own wife and kids, it’s wasted effort.
I think 1 Corinthians 13 was pretty clear about what love looks like and what happens without it. Might want to give that chapter another look.
I also think Ephesians 5:25 taught me more about being a husband and a Christian than any other verse in the bible, once I understood it.
All the deep theological stuff is relevant and important, but not at the expense of your family. Mark Twain once said that it wasn’t the stuff in the bible he didn’t understand that bothered him, it was the stuff that he did understand.
There’s honestly enough material between Matthew 5 and Matthew 7 to keep us busy for the rest of our lives. It’s also the most critical information in the book, as far as I can see.
Rebuild your foundations. Strengthen your own families. Be good to the people around you. Be generous. All basic stuff. You know, love.
But it’s also the stuff Jesus lived and died for, to teach us. That’s our foundation. That’s what is keeping us up.
Can I quote one more?
“What can you do to promote world peace? Go home and love your family.” Mother Teresa said that. She understood what mattered most.
Fix your foundation.