This should be Interesting...
The Current Corona Virus situation has exposed some things to me in the past couple weeks.
Specifically speaking two things that I've got minor issues with. I'm gonna tread lightly because these can be muddy waters.
The First thing I've noticed is something we all already are aware of. The reason I've come to this conclusion or epiphany is rather disturbing to me. We've all probably been in a grocery store in these last couple weeks. Different stores are handling it all differently and using their own strategies and discretion. Some stores have employees handing out complimentary sanitizer squirts while other stores have wipes available. As you continue to walk through and shop, this is where it gets ugly.
ENTIRE AISLES ARE EMPTY. ENTIRE SECTIONS ARE EMPTY.
And this isn't even my problem. My main issue is what's seen in the picture below.
My first conclusion is this...
HUMANITY IS SELFISH
Philippians 2:3 "Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves"
Let's just be honest. Why would any human being need this much stuff? It's not necessary at all. It's the people that are doing this stuff that make it incredibly hard for everyone else. I can name 5 people off the top of my head that are in need of these household items and can't find anything anywhere. The 'Hoard everything for myself' mindset is incredibly toxic and I find it disgusting. I've seen the elderly standing in these empty ransacked aisles in disbelief and shock. It's just disappointing. What happened to love? What happened to 'Save some for the fishes'? What happened to sharing is caring? This is so far from the heart of God and It's tough to witness.
1 Corinthians 10:24 "No one should seek their own good, but the good of others."
My next conclusion that I've come to is a bit more spiritually deep.
As churches have had to close their physical doors and move to an online approach, there's a group of people that are UPSET. To be honest, their outrage is actually exposing their lack of theology. These past weeks I've had the 'pleasure' of speaking with people that are complaining about churches closing their doors. You'll be surprised when you hear why they're so upset. The conversations have went something like this...
"I dont like this online church thing'
"I need a worship team that's present in the room to help me worship"
"I need my pastor preaching to me in person to hear from God"
There's a legitimately large group of people that are SO reliant upon a worship team and a 'Word' from the preacher that they don't know what to do with themselves right now. And if there's a message I want the Church to know right now, it would be this...
The Same God that's present when you gather in the church building, is the same God that's present in your HOME
The bible says that Jesus is the same yesterday, today and forever. The same presence of the Holy Spirit that is felt during corporate worship gatherings is the same Spirit that's available to you RIGHT NOW wherever you are. God's not even limited to your church or your house. ANYWHERE you are or anywhere you find yourself, the manifest Presence of God can invade there. I've seen God's presence move inside of restaurants, at sporting events, and even over the phone. God's presence is not limited to the Church building.
I would dare to say that Revival will NOT come until the people of God begin to understand this very principal. It's dangerous when we limit our worship, prayer, and devotion to only taking place on Sundays when we're at church. If that's the case then we begin to treat God like a parent who ONLY gets visiting rights on the weekend. Jesus said when we pray we should go into our room, and close the door and pray to our Heavenly Father. Jesus didn't wait til He was in a temple to pray, He turned WHEREVER He was into a a sanctuary and prayed and worshiped the Father, as should we!
I love worship teams. Bethel, Elevation, Jesus Culture, Hillsong, they're all great! My home church worship team is incredibly anointed and helps lead me into the Presence of God weekly. BUT, if we're not creating a lifestyle of worship anywhere and everywhere we go, then we've missed it. While I admire worship teams, the truth is that they're not in my home and walking through everyday life with me. I've gotta be mature and disciplined enough in my own faith to access Heaven myself whether there's a praise team or not. When Jesus died on the cross the bible says the veil to the temple was torn from top to bottom. Through faith in Jesus we all have access to Him. So let us not forget the access that has been granted to us through Christ Jesus.
Preaching of the Word
If Sunday is the only day that we read our bibles... There's a problem. If you feel like the only way you hear from God is through your pastors sermons... There's a problem. People tell me often about how they don't hear God. Texts, emails, phone calls are coming in all the time about how people are struggling to hear God. My first question to them is always the same. Have you been reading your bible?
It's hard to hear from God when your bible is CLOSED
They say the messier a bible is it shows the better the life of the Christian. The problem in the American church is more than likely dusty bibles. The bible is bread for daily use and not cake for special occasions. Jesus said Himself that man cannot live on bread alone but by every word that comes from the mouth of God. With that said, when is the last time that you ate? I'm not talking about tacos either. When was the last time you fed your Spirit man by reading the Word of God? If the only day that you eat the Word is Sunday, then you're spiritually starving.
During this time of Online church and basically no physical gathering of the body of Christ, may you develop a DEEPER dependency on God like never before. May you develop a HUNGER and THIRST for His Presence and His Word. I believe God is using this season to see which of His people are married to the tradition and idea of CHURCH, and which of His people are married to the bridegroom Himself, Christ.
I pray that we encounter God through Worship and His Word in this season and deepen and develop our PERSONAL faith.