Monday, September 7, 2009

" I love this bar... church?"

Yesterday, my pastor spoke on Gospel Community, basically what does it mean to be the church. He read the lyrics of a Toby Keith song called "I love this Bar", and here they are:

We got winners, we got losers

Chain smokers and boozers

And we got yuppies, we got bikers

We got thristy hitchhikers

And the girls next door dress up like movie stars

Hmm, hmm, hmm I love this bar

We got cowboys, we got truckers

Broken-hearted fools and suckers

And we got hustlers, we got fighters

Early birds and all-nighters

And the veterans talk about their battle scars

Hmm, hmm, hmm I love this bar


I love this bar

It's my kind of place

Just walkin' through the front door

Puts a big smile on my face

It ain't too far, come as you are

Hmm, hmm, hmm I love this bar

I've seen short skirts, we got high-techs

Blue-collar boys and rednecks

And we got lovers, lots of lookers

And I've even seen dancing girls and hookers

And we like to drink our beer from a mason jar

Hmm, hmm, hmm I love this bar

Yes I do

I like my truck (I like my truck)

I like my girlfriend (I like my girlfriend)

I like to take her out to dinner

I like a movie now and then

But I love this bar

It's my kind of place

Just trollin' around the dance floor

Puts a big smile on my face

No cover charge, come as you are

Hmm, hmm, hmm I love this bar

Hmm, hmm, hmm I love this bar

We got divorcees and a big bouncer man

An old jukebox and a real bad band

We got waitresses and we got barflies

A dumb-ass and a wise-guy

If you get too drunk just sleep out in your car

Reason number 672 why

Hmm, hmm, hmm I love this bar

Play it on out boys

Beer-thirty's over

Got to take it on home

Hmm, hmm, hmm I love this bar

I just love it

Definitely church talk, right? Ha! After he read it though, he asked the question "what if this was a song about the church? what if you replaced all the 'i love this bar' lines with 'i love this church'?? Seriously go do it... waiting...

wow. now i know the idea breaks down a little, but you get the picture. its not that often today that people love their church. and it is even less often that we have a diverse group of people at a church. sadly, alot of churches have begun to look like each other... no diversity in race, social statuses, economical statuses, age etc. this has to make us wonder, is this what the writer of Acts was talking about when he said "all the believers were together and had everything in common..."?

i dont think it was. when jesus prayed at the end of his life on earth, he prayed for future believers to be one just as He and God the Father are one. anyhow, this is a whole other theological issue... back to my point.

my heart was just broken for how we as the church are missing the point of biblical community. some other phrases that my pastor used which really challenged me:

"most of us want to do church instead of wanting to be church".

"you cannot have God be your Father if you wont have the Church as your mother." (he quoted this from someone else, but i didnt catch who)

i think lately i have just noticed that most of us Christians want to talk about loving community and how much we love our small groups or bible studies or whoever, but we are missing the point. Loving people we like is not going to make us stand out from the world. they dont have a problem loving people they are fond of either!

but loving people we dont easily like or get along with- that is a biblical community. look at the disciples. Jesus called together a smorgasbord of guys who would normally never associate with each other: fishermen (laborer or blue collar workers), a tax collector (greedy men who took $), a zealot (or political activist), and we arent even told what else. these guys would normally hate one another, but the lived and breathed life together while Jesus was on earth- and after.

now they fought. they tried to outdo one another. they messed up. but they stayed together, because they knew they were brothers in the Lord. brothers. family.

but we dont treat church like that today. we treat it like a place we go on weekends. we try to avoid the people we think are difficult, or we talk about them to such and such. we are so annoying (me included)!!!

this week i am challenging myself, and you (whoever you are) to love your difficult people. learn patience, kindness, goodness and self control through this. isnt that what we are supposed to be doing anyhow??

happy holiday! enjoy some challenging quotes too...

He who loves his dream of a community more than the Christian community itself becomes a destroyer of the latter, even though his personal intentions may be ever so honest and earnest and sacrificial.

Dietrich Bonhoeffer

In the first century in Palestine, Christianity was a community of believers. Then Christianity moved to Greece and became a philosophy. Then it moved to Rome and became an institution. Then it moved to Europe and became a culture. And then it moved to America and became a business. We need to get back to being a healthy, vibrant community of true followers of Jesus.

Pricilla Shirer

No comments:

Post a Comment