Crap, another friend shared about getting kicked out of church. Arrgh. It’s painful, but sadly not rare– I have my own stories…
People can have different ideas, or giftings that don’t fit traditional parameters (e.g. gender/marital/parental status, etc.), and misunderstandings can be easy. But should talents or abilities cease the moment someone enters a church? Can we, especially those in church leadership, listen to someone if they aren’t preaching from the pulpit?
People have been rejected, not taken seriously, or flat-out exiled since the beginning of “Church.” Remember when Jesus healed a man born blind and religious leaders interrogated his family and ultimately exiled him? These so-called ‘lovers of God’ demonstrated hate for men and used their power and position to cast out a man touched by God. But Jesus himself went looking for him– that’s our hope too. (John 9:35)
If you’ve been misunderstood or set aside, or experienced such non-acceptance you needed to leave to survive, be sure God *Himself is coming for you…
To all who’ve been rejected or pushed out of Church.. to those whose insights, vision or heart was withheld because of age, gender, tenure or any other superficial matter, know this:
“The Revelation came from the Wilderness, not the Pulpit.”
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Remember John the Baptist? He traded Temple ministry for camel clothes and crazy diet, but had a wildly important revelation from God. It wasn’t delivered in a well-attended, crisp-suited church/Temple, and John probably never even considered himself a “Preacher.” (Yet in reality he was the son of a High Priest thus likely direct heir to those sacred Temple duties. (Luke 1:5-10)
To those in any power positions in religious institutions:
Please take a moment to survey what’s really happening in the world and your church, and, possibly, if necessary, stop. Repent, that is: change directions. Interfering with a moving train seems insane, but a train going the wrong direction does no passenger good.
Is your church focused on numbers?
Anything from growth, to amount of people or money saved, the amount programmes running, etc…? Or maybe your Church is so focused on God, the Bible, prayer meetings, Bible studies, fasting rituals and home groups, that the members see more of eachother than neighbors, other family, friends and just people outside of church? Be on the look out for a divine intervention, which may seem crazy, or come from an unlikely source, like a “voice crying in the wilderness,” but that may just be God’s Heart.
Traditions and leadership hierarchies can make us hard of hearing or hard of heart, but if we actively seek to keep our hearts soft, we may just catch a glimpse of the Wind.
*I use “He” and “His” as simple pronouns for God but fully recognize God with both male and female ‘identity’ (for lack of a better word), as demonstrated throughout the Bible, but most blatantly through humanity itself. More in a 2-pt post: “Transgender God” here.
More posts of interest:
- Busting Religion: Why I let my kids play with Ninjago, Batman, Elsa and Anna..
- Who would you rather rule? Jesus or a Pharisee?
- Did You Make God an Idol? 5 Signs & Tips to Quit
- Social Justice of Sodomy? The Real Reason Sodom Burned
- Open Letter to those identifying as “Christian” in American
- Sometimes we need Mud in our Eyes to See Straight
- A Tale of Two Sauls: God is Always looking to Honor You
-Feature photo: Image from President Barack Obama’s 2nd inauguration, I believe.
-Still from Hidden Figures (2016)
-Still of Aurora Borrealis captured by me from amazing video clip by Andrey Green for the song “The Best of Times? (Garden City Movement)