Wednesday, January 17, 2007

the method isn't so sacred

How could I know that that post would draw many comments....and many varying opinions. I laid awake last night pondering the comments, pondering my responses. I'll go about it this way...

I think where my frustration comes is the fact that some ministries, therefore people, make the 'method' of doing things more sacred than The Message (to borrow a phrase from Christine Caine).

The Message is: dress modestly. But this is turned into a 10 point checklist to see if you are dressing modestly (a method - which is fine, but not THE MESSAGE).

The Message is: worship God. But a method of what type of songs - music and words - is held higher than the Statue of Liberty holds her torch.

The Message is: be hospitable. But the 'method' of Sunday morning home church and potluck, oh excuse me, pan blessing following, with a church of no more than 20 or 30 (and only that many because you must have 6+ children to be truly saved) becomes somehow more godly than those that attend a, God-forbid, 'mega-church' and then actually go out to eat afterwards - because you shouldn't frequent any type of business on Sunday because you are contributing to someone not keeping the Sabbath. (wow, loooong sentence)

And wowsers, I better quit now because this fasting thing brings out the ugly in me. My heart is to experience a lifetime of encounters with an amazing, vast God who is radically in love with me...but for no good reason, because I am nothing. But I melt Him with one shutter of my eyelashes - because He created me to be loved by Him and me to passionately love Him.


Shari said...

Yep! It is an age old problem. The Pharises were so busy trying to get it right that they missed God, himself in their midst.

EEEEMommy said...

now, I'm with you completely!

In a couple of those, it seems that the Method takes the place of the Holy Spirit.
For example, we still have a TV, but we watch it increasingly less, some of that is busyness, but some is because knowing the Message of "whatsoever things are pure...", we experienced growing conviction from the Spirit when we would sit down to veg in front of some of our "favorite" shows. We were compelled to obey the Spirit inside of us and stop watching, but it hasn't been based on any man/ministry's checklist/Method.

So, I say, boldly proclaim the Message and trust the Holy Spirit to lead the people in obedience according to His will (and it might not always look the same on every unique individual).

I didn't mean to discourage with my previous comment. Please forgive me if I did.

Rachelle said...

I agree wholeheartedly. This is the very thought process that has helped me re-evaluate a lot of small-minded and religious thinking that I had.