Jay writes, I've been reading a lot about Christ Church in Alexandria, Va. In case you've somehow missed it, this is the church George Washington and Robert E. Lee attended during their lives. Both men are remembered by small plaques attached to the places where they once sat to worship.
Leaders at the church have recently decided to remove the plaques. They've received some complaints from members and guests alike that the plaques make them feel "uncomfortable" or "unsafe". They've even been cited as a reason why some people have stopped attending and why some guests have not returned."
It's probably a part of the recent and deeply flawed trend toward removing anything objectionable in our society. Statutes, memorials, monuments, even graves are being removed and relocated so as not to offend anyone or make them feel uncomfortable.
Personally, I'm waiting for the day Hooters, Bud Light, Jack Daniels, and the like have to remove their signs. They deeply offend me on several levels. I get "triggered" each time I see one of them.
But I digress...
When I ponder the decision by Christ Church to remove the plaques remembering Washington and Lee, I'm struck not only by the absurdity of it all, but by a deeper and perhaps more profound thought: We should be uncomfortable in our churches.
You see, if the people who worship with you don't make you the least bit uncomfortable, it means your church isn't reaching lost people with the Gospel. It means lives aren't being changed and sin isn't being confronted. It means you aren't reaching out to the lost or reaching down to those in need. It means you expect everyone to be just like you.
It means you aren't doing very much at all.
If the Gospel is being preached and the church is really reaching out to the lost, you're going to be somewhat uncomfortable with who comes to worship with you. It means that people, deeply flawed and sinful people, are coming and hearing about the love and grace of Christ. They're coming to have their lives changed and their eternities altered.
The sexually sinful woman will come. The man with a slew of failed marriages will be there. So will the alcoholic and the drug addict. The thief and liar will be there too. So will the ex con and the guy who struggles with porn. They'll all come and bring their checkered pasts with them.
That'll probably make you a little uncomfortable.
But that's exactly what God wants.
If you're a little uncomfortable at church, then congratulations!
Your church is doing what it's supposed to do!
"Do you not know that the wicked will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: Neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters nor adulterers nor male prostitutes nor homosexual offenders nor thieves nor the greedy nor drunkards nor slanderers nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God. And that is what some of you were.
But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God."
—I Corinthians 9:9-11
Thanks Jay for allowing me to share this.
In His Hands,