We may talk a good game. We may be able to trash-talk with the best of ’em. We may even be able for a brief time talk so much smack we believe it ourselves. But, there’s coming a day when God is going to filter all of the fluff in our lives and demand that we put up, or shut up!
In Christ’s teaching about that great day in which we will appear before His Judgment Seat, He makes a distinction between those who SAY and those who DO.
Matthew 7:21 – 22, “Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven. (BOLD added for emphasis)
22 Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works?
Jesus went on to say we will be known by the fruit, or evidence, we produce. Did you get that? We will not be measured by our professions or confessions, we will be measured by the completion of the mission!
Let’s face it, too often our churches can resemble a laboratory. We run experiments in controlled environments. We measure, we scrutinize; we theorize and hypothesize! We sanitize, and organize. We’re dead-set on our protocols, policies and procedures. We’re never quite ready to pull the trigger on the findings of our experiments or theories. We’re just content to remain, much like lab rats in their cages, trapped in the lab.
God never intended for us to remain in the lab never to step out into real life where things can get messy and unpredictable. Jesus specialized in the messy didn’t He? Sinners, lepers, tax collectors, and prostitutes…oh my!
If studying is your thing, research will reveal churches that are growing are the ones that go from the lab to real life. They’re shedding their proverbial lab coats and throwing out their clipboards. They’ve quit crunching the numbers and they’ve stepped into a new realm of power and demonstration. A new world of influence and impact.
Everyday churches are closing their doors and pastors are moving on to other jobs and vocations because their church was too content running experiments in the safety of a sanitized environment rather than getting out there, doing something meaningful and impactful, with real-life examples of people’s lives being transformed by the renewing, life-giving power of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
You can’t grow a church in a petri-dish folks! As gross as this sounds, we can’t artificially inseminate this world with the Gospel!
- It’s time for some real reproductive power!
- Some real fruit-bearing power!
- Some real Holy Ghost power!
It’s time we shed the lab coats, safety goggles, and clipboards, roll up our sleeves and do whatever it takes to get the job done!
We need to move beyond the hypothetical and theoretical to the practical and powerful! One of the most frustrating feelings in my current role as a quality coordinator at my company is whenever there’s an audit, those in charge of preparing for it seem casual and so distracted. There’s no sense of urgency! Dare I say, the church can be just as apathetic at times about her role in these Last Days!
One day soon we’re all going to stand before the Judgment Seat of Christ. One day we’re going to be put in the very precarious situation where we too will be judged on the deeds done in our body.
Will we be those who “say” we did this in your name Lord with no fruit, or proof, to substantiate our case? Or, will we be numbered among those who actually had the boldness, the courage, the urgency to step out of the lab and make a real difference in our generation!
My closing questions for you:
• Do you see yourself as a person of action or a person who is content to allow others to do what needs to be done?
• Do you do more planning than executing?
• Maybe you’re already sharing Christ with this world, so is there an undeveloped talent God has given you, an unanswered calling on your life, an unsung song inside you, an unwritten book you’ve put off for awhile?
• What one or two things will you begin to do right away, perhaps even today, that will set you up to begin to bring forth fruit in these undeveloped areas of your life?
“Serminutes” – Sermon in a Minute. One Minute Inspirational Sermonettes, Devotionals, and Sermon Ideas for Busy Christians, Pastors, Teachers, and Bible Students! Visit our ABOUT PAGE for details on what exactly that is. Thank you for visiting today! May the Lord richly bless you. ~ RD Mangold