This past weekend I happened to be on the road. The bulk of my driving was done on Sunday morning so it was easy to find a plethora of religious programming to listen to while I drove. The first program I listened to was a prominent pastor (who will remain un-named) who used the entire 45 minutes to rail against and “document” the heresy of “pre-millennialism”. I thought to myself of the waste of valuable air time to throw rocks at fellow believers rather than preach the love of Jesus to the whosoevers that might be listening. At the end of the program he announced that this was the last in a long series on that subject which had been aired and you could order the entire DVD set for free. By now I am really getting disgusted as I come to realize this guy had wasted who knows how many opportunities to reach the lost.
But (sad) truth be told, he WAS reaching the un-churched, but I’m afraid he reached them with a message that only validates their choice to stay as far away as possible from Christians. Many Christians seem all too often to act as if it was a “slow news day” and default to attacks on fellow Christians with whom they don’t agree. And really, on a practical note, do the fine points of pre-mid-post tribulation or millennium affect your or my daily salvation or call to love Christ and serve His mission to the lost. Not in the least. I’m quite sure that there is not even one amongst us who would find the rapture happening earlier (or later) than he thought and would in response decline the adjustment in their all too precious schedule. Then, as if this pastor hadn’t damaged the reputation of Christ enough, he doubled down with the free offer of a second series he had aired entitled “The errors of the Catholic church exposed”.
At this point I lost that radio signal and found another program to listen to. From the frying pan into the fire would describe the feeling I got from the next preacher. A large mega church pastor was challenging homosexuals and the whole same sex marriage debate. Now correct me if I’m wrong, but isn’t the divorce rate in the church on par if not higher than amongst the un-churched. Additionally the teen pregnancy rate is about equal among Christians as those outside its doors. Who are we in the church (living as the minority in America) to point and judge those who don’t really care what we preach while they see our own house is in such hypocritical disarray? Shame on us Christians!
There is a redeeming point here as next I found a country and western Christian radio station (I was driving in Texas). Country and western music can be both funny, cheesy and thought provoking at the same time with lyrics such as “If you won’t leave me alone, I’ll find someone who will”. Translate that into religions themes and you get “tired of riding in the saddle alone” or “I burned that bridge and swam ashore … and You were waiting on the other side”. Although not my first choice, I was encouraged and ultimately undone as a most countrified version of “I surrender all” complete with steel guitar fill my truck along with my broken and weeping voice.
Lord, please take the wheel of our lives and help us to serve you and you alone and not try to take the focus off our own desperate need for you by putting the spotlight on someone else.