Yesterday was a great day at the Journey. We officially launched our new campus at Rutland, in the Providence community. We had a great time, and a great turnout. It was the first time that Erik started his new series "The Savage Generation". It was really good. I hope to have the video up on the website by Wednesday evening so y'all can watch. I promise, you won't regret it!
So, this past week, I spent a few days in Washington DC. DUDE! It's freezing up there!!!! I took some pics of the monuments, walked all around the city, visited the Capitol and the Supreme Court, and had an impromptu meeting with the Worship Pastor of National Community Church, Steph Modder. For those of you who don't know a lot about NCC, they are a multi-site church like the Journey, only they've been doing it for about ten years! They meet in theaters all over the DC area. Pastor Mark Batterson is their Lead Pastor, and his podcast and videocast from each week reaches over 80 countries. They're kind of a big deal!!!
They own a coffee shop there called Ebenezers. It sits over on Capitol Hill, next to Union Station. They've been voted DC's best coffee for a couple of years now. I have to tell you, though I'm not much of a coffee drinker... it is better than Starbucks! I know a lot of you coffee snobs out there are saying, "NO WAY!", but it's true! I had some, and it is.
Anyway, I just wanted to give a shout out to my new friend Steph, and thank her for taking the time to sit down and talk to me. She's been doing this for a lot longer than I have and has a wealth of information that I plan on gathering and using. She also told me that she's getting ready to release an album in the near future, so y'all be watching for that.
Here's my question for you all to ponder. Why do we think that our churches are in competition with each other? Are we not serving the same Jesus? Why do we have to try and be better than the church down the street, instead of praying that God would blow the doors off their building and bring multitudes of people into their folds? We know that everyone has different likes and dislikes when it comes to houses of worship. If we know that the style of the Journey may not be for you, but Sacred Heart Catholic church is where you hear God speak to you, then why do we put down other churches and talk bad about them? I don't remember reading anywhere in the Bible that, "For God so loved the Southern Baptist Church, He sent His one and only Son, so that if you go to a Southern Baptist Church, you can be saved". Never read that anywhere! Have you...? Didn't think so. (sidenote- the Journey is SBC affiliated, so I'm not just randomly picking out Southern Baptists!)
Here's the deal people. The church has got to put aside it's worldly, petty differences. Do you know that Christianity is flourishing everywhere outside the United States? We have become a post-Christian nation. The reason is because the church is too busy trying to tell everyone what we're against, rather than what we're for. And just in case you forgot what that is... it's love, compassion, truth, and bringing the only message of Hope that can truly change this hurting and broken world. You know, often times we read the book of Revelation and dream up these grand ideas of what we think the end times is gonna look like. And that's fine. It's a cool-weird book! I love to read it too. But just like in most things, we tend to skip over the mundane boring stuff that actually has implications to our life hear and now. The first few chapters of that book talk about Christ judging the Church! He talks about the churches that He finds favor with, and those that He chastises for their neglect of their mission. I fear that a lot of us are going to be on that second side. It's not enough to say you believe that He is the Son of God and that He died for our sins. We have to start bearing His image, here and now. Instead of tearing down other churches, why don't we start looking at our own and ask if we're doing what He would be doing if He were here.
Ok, I'm off my soapbox! Hope you all have a great week. I'll talk to you all later.
Here's the song list from the last two week's catalyst services (since I was outta town and din't post last weeks!)
All Because of Jesus (Fee), Glorious One (Fee), Lift High (Eddie Kirkland), Amazing Grace/My Chains Are Gone (Chris Tomlin)
Doxology/Oh Praise Him (David Crowder Band), Sing To The King (Cindy Foote), Sing Sing Sing (Chris Tomlin), Oh, How He Loves Us (Eddie Kirkland), Thank You, Jesus (Robbie Cheuvront... that's me! Still working on getting this stuff recorded. Hopefully soon)