Sure it’s easy to shamelessly wag our finger at Wall Street bankers, traders, and lenders. Their avarice, greed, and ostentatious ways are notorious. But before we strain our finger, let’s not forgot who they’ve been working for. We’re also involved in their trades, their transactions, and the thirst for MORE. The hard reality is, we are Wall Street. We are the lenders, we are the traders, and now we are the debtors.
The church is not untainted by this. I understand a need to be a healthy and purposeful church, but have we gone overboard with our focus on formulas, numbers, size, influence, marketing techniques, and branding? Have we forgotten what makes the church the church? At the end of the day, are we really driven by God’s heart? Are we really motivated by Christ’s love and not the money or the numbers?
Ouch! But he doesn't stop there...
While in Thailand, the Muslims we worked with on one of the southern islands were sick of the Western “help” they received. They said after the tsunami, “western Christians came to give us things without asking what we needed, and then they took pictures with their banners and left.” Their conclusion, “The Christians used us.”
Double ouch! Kick us while we are down, why don't you?
But, he still isn't done:
Love not the world. Neither the things in the world. For anyone that loves the world, the love of the Father is not in Him. For all that is in the world,
The Lust of the Flesh.
The Lust of the Eyes.
And the Pride of Life.
Is not of the Father but is of the world.
And the world passes away and the lusts thereof. . . But he that does the will of God abides forever. (I John 2:15-17)
Dead on! May the love of the Father abide in us and control us. May others see that love and want to love the Father also. If that happens, any economic downturn is worth it.