Sunday, March 10, 2013

Who Does That?!?

A friend of mine once had a job naming new clothing lines. Bonus: she named a turtleneck sweater The Devereaux and mailed one to me! 

Another friend used to get paid to sit at intersections and count cars (I think this had something to do with the effectiveness of traffic lights). 

Did you know there is actually an industry for retrieving golf balls from the pools of water on courses? Yes, you, too, could be a golf ball diver. Start a career as a chicken sexer. If you’d like to get paid to play on your ipad all day, consider being a furniture tester. 

Or, you could join forces with my husband and me and start a church.

What?!? Who does that?!? And - why?

The 21st century has clearly demonstrated that we are now living in a post-Christian culture, where the church in general, and the Christian faith in particular, no longer influence the culture at large. Four years ago, Newsweek declared “The End of Christian America” and chronicled the decline of the importance of Christianity in modern society. More recently, the Huffington Post describes the death of traditional Christianity while a generic spirituality is on the rise. 

So why, in these conditions, would anyone want to start a church? Isn’t God dead and the church irrelevant? Aren’t we doomed to offend people, or, worse, to fail?

Quite possibly. But our job on this earth is not to try and impress people or even to win them over to our way of thinking. Instead, we follow the call of Jesus to abide in him and bear the fruit of his Spirit. Starting a church is about making and maturing disciples of Jesus - proclaiming the good news in word and deed, drawing people to this life-with-Christ, and instructing people in his ways. It’s actually not at all, in any way, about us. 

We start churches because we love God and we take his command to love people seriously. 
We start churches because we are ruled by Christ’s love for us.
We are certain that if one person died for everyone else, then all of us have died. 
And Christ did die for all of us. He died so we would no longer live for ourselves, but for the one who died and was raised to life for us.
We are careful not to judge people by what they seem to be, though we once judged Christ in that way.
Anyone who belongs to Christ is a new person. The past is forgotten and everything is new.
God has done it all! 
He sent Christ to make peace between himself and us, and he has given us the work of making peace between himself and others.
What we mean is that God was in Christ, offering peace and forgiveness to the people of this world.
And he has given us the work of sharing his message of peace. We have been sent to speak for Christ, and God is begging the world to listen to our message. We speak for Christ and sincerely, passionately, ask everyone to make peace with God. [paraphrase of Paul’s words to the Corinthian church]

I really don’t know what will happen on this church-planting adventure. I only know that I carry about a message of hope that people so desperately need. I know that my life doesn’t belong to me and that giving it away is the best chance I have at demonstrating the generosity of God. I know what it was to live without Jesus and I can testify to the unbelievable journey of what life with him is like. My job is to represent and re-present Jesus to everyone I meet; it’s his job to prove himself to them.

So what do you think? 
Are we crazy to start a church? Tell me why we shouldn't do it!
Want to know more? Contact me - we love sharing this HUGE vision!
Want to help us? Make a tax-deductible donation to the Devereaux-NYC Fund here.

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