“My food,” said Jesus, “is to do the will of him who sent me and to finish his work.” John 4:34
“I’m just not being fed.” You’ve heard the cliché. It tends to mean that someone isn’t hearing things that are comforting, challenging, enlightening, or motivating. Or perhaps that they aren’t enjoying something enough. At its base, it expects a passive reception of something that a church leader or church program should be providing.
What if “our food” were the food Jesus speaks of? If our food, like Jesus’, is to do the will of the Father, “being fed” ceases to be a passive reception and becomes an active involvement in God’s mission. It transforms our understanding of Christianity from a focus on prosperity (“What am I getting?”) to a focus on participation in the will of God (“How am I participating?”).
2 thoughts on “Being fed”
Reblogged this on teddy ray and commented:
I posted this nearly a year ago. I’m re-blogging myself (is that okay? probably not) because:
a) I don’t even think my wife was reading when I posted this. So it’s new content for all but three of you out there.
b) I’ve realized how much I’ve written since that is trying to do the same thing — combat the notion of church and Christianity as a consumer spectacle, and instead encourage us to see Christianity – and our participation in the church – as a participation in the life of God. When we come to the faith and the church as selfish consumers, I think we’ll come away empty in the long run. That means church leaders need to be doing anything we can to help people participate in the life of Christ, not just come and consume a good show/program/event/service. That makes it messier. But it’s also real food.
What you say is absolutely true, Teddy. But it is not the whole truth. There is another side to consider.
I have sat under preachers who had nothing to say; who, not because of false teaching, but because of unprepared, unconnected, unintelligent, teaching, left the body in poorer position to participate in the life of Christ than when they came to church. On the other hand, I have sat under a less than stellar pulpiteer who week after week brought a sense of God with the words he shared. His messages were not polished but powerful. As the old janitor who unlocked the doors to the church every Sunday morning would ask the pastor before others arrived, “Is there a word from the Lord this morning?”
It works the same for me in the arena of worship and praise. I have been ushered into the presence of God by three Apache youth leading worship with the only accompaniment a worship CD out of a boom box and no lyrics posted anywhere. Their sincerity and love for God carried them and me. But to have quality musicians who hone their craft, and love God through it, helps me bask in his presence from week to week.
Are you sure your wife is reading these yet?