By: Loren Rosseer
When people don't "attend church" one of the first assumptions is, "They're wounded." Yesterday,Â Antonio MaciasÂ made a brilliant observation. "The fact that 'church hurt' is even a concept reflects the seriousness of the issues in organized religion."
I believe most Christians are indeed well meaning. But that's exactly what blinds us to the problem! We hear the pastor's good heart, we see the friendliness of the congregation and so we say, "Not my church!" But what are we looking for? Demons? Monsters? Wicked people?. (That's why so many think my posts are hateful attacks on Christians.) But what doesn't occur to us is perhaps the problem is not with hearts but with machinery.
Think about it. King David was "a man after God's own heart." Yet, his "brilliant" idea to use machinery (an ox cart) to transport the ark (God's presence) got a guy killed! Was there something wrong with David's heart? Was there something wrong with his motives? What about with the guy who died? NO! He was actually trying to keep the ark from falling off the machinery! What was the problem? David adopted a method to carry God's presence that was not inline with the way God had instructed. The priests were to carry it - not man-made machinery! David's heart didn't get the guy killed. And if I may be so bold - God didn't either! It was the implantation of a man-made method.
The scores of believers wounded by church are not the result, in most cases, of people having evil motives or leaders having wicked hearts. The problem is Christians are utilizing machinery to carry the presence of God that was never meant to be in place. While they are busy saying, "Not my church!" another Christian is getting mangled in the gears of obligation, hierarchy, commitment, performance, business, and PR. Then, in order to win back the wounded they beef up the machinery even more and they wonder why they aren't running back. Many have learned the secret to surviving the machinery is apathy. Those who care too much or get too involved tend to get mangled. So not getting overly involved is the key to survival. Thus the reason mega churches do so well.
Until the man-made machinery is dealt with and the priests (all believers) once again carry God's presence as family, the landscape will continue to be littered with wounded Christians. And inviting them back to the factory is a really bad idea.