Do we still think so?

I don’t think I had ever paid attention to this hymn before, When the Church of Jesus. You know, it’s in the back of the hymnal–one of those newer ones.  Actually, it’s under the heading of “Called to God’s Mission.”

If you pay attention, you’ll see what a convicting truth that is.

When the Church of Jesus
Shuts its outer door,
Lest the roar of traffic
Drown the voice of prayer:
May our prayers, Lord, make us
Ten times more aware
That the world we banish
Is our Christian care.

 

If our hearts are lifted
Where devotion soars
High above this hungry
Suffering world of ours:
Lest our hymns should drug us
To forget its needs,
Forge our Christian worship
Into Christian deeds.

 

Lest the gifts we offer,
Money, talents, time,
Serve to salve our conscience
To our secret shame:
Lord, reprove, inspire us
By the way you give;
Teach us, dying Savior,
How true Christians live.

I pray that more of us get tired of hearing the church complain about how things used to be. You know the drill: more people used to go to church; people used to give to the church; church was a priority; faith was important; things were so perfect.

We’ve spent so much time complaining about them, that we never even realized what happened to us.  Somewhere along our way, we turned our backs on our communities.  Maybe it was because they didn’t look like us anymore.  Maybe we thought we had enough people in our churches.  Maybe we were just comfortable.

And now look at us.

Look at the world around us.

Could we have prevented every evil act from happening?  Could the church have really done anything meaningful for its communities?  Could the church have any bearing the world around it?

Well, When the Church of Jesus is hymn number 592 in The United Methodist Hymnal.  Hymn number 591 is Rescue the Perishing.  So, at least at some point, we thought so.

Stay blessed…john

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