Writer, Church leader, Eccentric Nut, Marketer

I'm Church Leader, Writer, Speaker, Marketer, Kindness Project Founder, Broadcaster and Superhero. But most important I'm a Husband, Father and a worshiper of Jesus.

20 November 2008

Me and my gang


Since I'll never be mistaken for a really "youthy" youth leader anyway... last night I decided to teach my youth group about the history of the early church. You know because Kids LOVE history. Now... i did it as a Mad Lib... but the main stuff was there. It's tough when you're a kid to really get a good perspective on who you are. You often have very little to compare against.

When you're a church kid, (as I was for much of my childhood) you're told that you're "A Christian" but I often wonder at what age that means anything at all. About 30 of us crowded into my den last night as I showed them this very cool moving history map about World Religion movement throughout the last 5000 years.



We talked in great detail about what church life was like during the book of Acts and then how it changed when the gospel exploded into the world of the gentile and how from that point on... we've all been trying to find the way to follow Jesus in our homeland. Throughout the earth. Throughout the ages.

I felt a real kinship last night talking about this. A familiarity in the struggle. An understanding and a commonality. In the communal life era of church in Jerusalem, Christians shared everything, including their mindset. They lived together, ate together, shared Jesus together... and were of like mind and spirit. Sometimes I feel like this when I worship. I just feel at home. I've worshiped with believers in West Africa, Asia, and in the Great White North... and it feels the same. Like we're all in it together. Dropping anchor and honoring the One is worthy of our praise.

I've shared meals with strangers in a dark church basement in Manila, small mud houses, and in multi million dollar mansions and known that each one of my hosts were my brothers, because of the God-Love I saw and felt coming from them... all in such different contexts. They know me and I know them. We each GOT what made the other tick. When we would sit together, talk together, pray together, worship together, laugh together... we knew each other. Because we honestly were one.

People are very lonely in our world. There is an extreme ache that comes with loneliness. I used to love being alone, but I can't do it well anymore. When I accepted Jesus into my heart, the Bible says that there was great celebrating in heaven. It also meant that I became part of a gigantic family who is called to be generous, hospitable, loving, accepting. I sometimes wonder how people function in our modern cities without a church family. Because when I don't know what to do with a bathroom leak... I can call a brother (of like mind, motive and spirit) who'll be happy to help me because he knows I'm right there for him too!

Christians who have bailed on church because it's "hypocrisy" really need to play the argument out a bit further. We're all spazes that need to learn to mix it up with each other and live as a family. Fight with each other, work out our issues and learn to really RELY and COUNT ON each other as family. A Christian without a church is missing a piece to the puzzle. You CAN worship God alone... OF COURSE, but we were designed to live life together with other believers. It's part of the package. You're FAR from alone in this. Christian life is much bigger than you... don't cut yourself out of the blessing of fellowship intentionally.

My buddy Keith is on a driving journey to the tip of South America to discover what "the church" really looks like. When he pulls into a town, he asks God for a church to show up at, and then hangs out with people in his family for a while. Amazing! What a wonderful picture of what we're all involved in here.

I know that everywhere I earth... I have "my people". My Gang. People who I can relate to and who will know me and my heart. I will never go lonely in life. A relationship with Jesus is both intensively personal and a global movement of love, friendship and redemption that can't be stopped.

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