Imagine if somebody who didn’t know any better tried to figure out who Jesus is on the basis of what Jesus’ followers do and the things that seem important to us. Imagine if they sat in on a few church council meetings, attended a few worship services, joined a couple of committees. Imagine if they took a peek at our budgets. Pretty quickly they might jump to the conclusion that Jesus came to start a church.
It’s not all we do, of course. But we Christians do tend to spend a lot of our time, energy and money keeping the institution afloat. The way we do church together today is very expensive. And I’m not saying it’s wrong. Buildings give us a place to celebrate and mourn, to worship and learn. Buildings give us a space to share with our neighbors and a place to have potluck suppers.
It does seem that, in more and more places, it takes more and more effort to keep it all going. It’s no wonder confusion sometimes sets in and even we find ourselves thinking that “the church” is the most important thing. But Jesus did not come to start a church.
Tomorrow: The mission
Today we remember Lawrence, deacon, martyr, d. 258. This message was adapted from “Act Boldly for Mission” by Kelly Fryer that appeared in the July/August 2007 issue of Lutheran Woman Today (now Gather) magazin