/// A few Sunday’s ago, my pastor said a phrase that resonates with how I identify as a pastor and as a believer in Jesus Christ. At the end of the message during our second morning service, my pastor stood firmly in the pulpit and said:
There are no sacred things in this church except for Jesus Christ and His Gospel…Paul Sevar- Calvary Baptist Church, January 20th, 2019
Many of us would agree that this statement is accurate for the modern church. There should be no greater priority within the organized church than the service of Jesus and the administration of the Gospel of Jesus. The reason this statement resonates with me is do to the very nature of the content. Jesus Christ and His Gospel! As a pastor, I desire for nothing more than to see this message be the cornerstone of every congregation. Congregations tend to create what I like to call sacred spaces – identifiable areas within an organization that hold a certain amount of prominence or value to the purpose and function of that organization. Some sacred spaces are valuable to the mission of the church, while others distract the congregation from its original, God centered purpose. Most pastors spend a large portion of their waking hours focusing on the spaces within their congregation that have no value to the overall mission of the church; a mission that was handed down through the work of Jesus Christ. The spaces we desire to focus on take a back seat to areas of congregational anxiety that is driven by an attitude of loss or fear. Not to say that all areas of the organizational functions of church are bad, but the emphasis placed on these functions can outweigh the priorities set forth in God’s Word.
The church is a wonderful extension of God’s grace, and it is evidenced through the work and teachings of Jesus. If Jesus is the whole reason for our organization, then Jesus needs to be the main focus of our meeting together. As believers, we must recapture our primary focus on a day to day basis, not just as the church cooperatively but as individuals personally. What sacred spaces have you removed God from in your church? What sacred spaces have you removed God from in your personal life? What spaces have you deemed as sacred that operate for self-interest and ego? Following Jesus Christ means transparency. We must become people whose lives are completely open and transparent before our Creator. We must be willing to allow God into every space of our life. Spend a few moments today to ask God to reveal sacred spaces in your church and personal life that He has yet to gain control. What can you start doing today to allow God to work in these spaces? Write it down and seek God’s guidance in bringing these areas under submission to Him. ///