Evangelical Egotism

I’ve had my first missed day yesterday.  Sorry about that.  If you, kindest of readers, will accept my apology, we will consider the failure covered by grace and move on.  If not, we can both wait here until you will accept my apology.  (I will wait patiently for you.)Thank you.  Glad to have that behind us.  I appreciate your forgiveness.

Moving forward, I really had not intended for my first non-advertised post to be quite like this, but this is what’s on my mind right now.  I’m sure this may make some people mad, but then again, maybe not.  I’m feeling very frustrated about it.  As you know, we visited a church on Sunday.  Between that, and another few instances since, I’m really agonizing about this and, unfortunately, I don’t have the ability to fix it.

The issue is this… Modern Evangelicalism, in most of its forms, is so very highly centered on the ego of the individual that it loses so much of what Christianity really is.  We had four songs in church on Sunday.  Every one of them was about me and my effort reaching out for God and my chasing God.  Unfortunately, the Bible says that God is the one who seeks us.  Another song I’ve heard recently speaks about us changing the world.  And yet, it is only the transformational power of the gospel that can effect any real change.

Let’s be clear.  I’m not saying we shouldn’t desire to be more like Christ; I’m not saying we shouldn’t desire to see our world changed for God.  But to put the onus for these changes onto us is not what Christianity is about.  It subtly defies God’s sovereignty and weakens the truths of Christianity.  If we can do something that God has claimed for Himself, we don’t need Him.  If God can’t do something because of us, we limit Him.  Neither of those is true.  Psalm 115:3, “Our God is in the heavens; He does all that He pleases.”  God is not limited by us.

I had a friend who used to say often about Christianity, “It’s not about you.”  And that is such a very real truth.  Christianity is an historic religion about the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ.  THAT is the gospel and that is the central teaching around which Christianity is based.  It simply isn’t about us.  We are invited to participate in God’s story, God doesn’t stoop into our story.  There is a huge difference in those two concepts.  It is high time that we return Christianity to where it belongs.  It is high time that we center evangelicalism back on God’s story and the gospel of Jesus Christ.

The other thing I find in these songs and ideals is the reason.  According to these songs, we pursue God to accomplish great things.  While I understand and believe that God is indeed responsible for the great things in life, I think we have lost the doctrine of vocation.  As a husband and a father, I work to earn money to support my family.  I spend time with my family playing games and sharing my thoughts and beliefs (and why I believe what I believe).  THESE simple and mundane tasks are just as important, just as worshipful, just as “great” as any great thing accomplished for God.  We lose the concept of the God of our daily life when we simply look for the God of the amazing.  And yet, it is in integral aspect of my calling before God to be a father and husband, to support and encourage my family, to teach biblical truths as best as I am able.  This may be mundane and ordinary, but God is the God of both the great and amazing as well as the God of the ordinary and mundane.

We need to recover from this egotistic religion that is so overly focused on the incredible that we eschew the holiness of the ordinary.

~CC

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