Rabbit Trail for Leaders

Posted by Worldview Warriors On Saturday, March 14, 2015 0 comments

by Nathan Buck

I want to backtrack for a moment this week.  Take a look at Romans 3:1-4.  I’m inserting the word “leader” where it says “Jew.” Yes I know it is a gentle sidestep from how I usually emphasize context, but go with me for a moment.

“What advantage, then, is there in being a Jew (leader), or what value is there in circumcision (leadership)? Much in every way! First of all, the Jews (leaders, like all believers) have been entrusted with the very words of God. What if some were unfaithful? Will their unfaithfulness nullify God’s faithfulness? Not at all! Let God be true, and every human being a liar. As it is written: ‘So that you may be proved right when you speak and prevail when you judge.’“

The last phrase in that passage is a quote from Psalm 51, when King David admits his sin of adultery and begs God to cleanse him with “hyssop.” My understanding is that that type of cleansing was like being cleansed with acid, stripped to the bone.  David knew his rebellion against God and selfish choices had to be purged for him to get back on track, and for the nation to follow God and not their broken king.

Many “fads” have happened in organizations and the church because leaders take even a healthy idea or move of God and then imitate only the parts they can control or generate income from. Case in point: “missional” is now the catch phrase for any “outreach program” in churches that want to sound edgy and fresh, but cannot or will not stomach what being “missional” truly is. At its core, being missional starts with a passion to see the church deployed across every domain of culture. This means it is fully integrated into business, politics, banking, industry, arts, etc.  It is not meant to control those domains or to somehow “churchify” them, but rather to be Christ in the midst of them and work toward God’s purposes through them, graciously letting them continue as they are, and offering wisdom for change only as God directs (and when they are ready for change).

It also requires a “centered set” value system, which intentionally partners with ANY organization that is moving in the same direction as God on any given idea or issue, even if they reject God on other issues.  This is not approval of all their agendas, but partnership where we are moving in the same direction.  This takes wisdom, courage, guts, grace, and love.  Most of all it takes being secure in your faith and your own skin.

If you are a leader, please don’t call yourself or your group missional, if you are still playing the “come to our church” “secular/sacred” “us/them” games.  And likewise if you are not partnered across denominations, and across racial/social boundaries, do not call yourself Kingdom minded - unless you really mean “your” kingdom.

We have a long way to go. Let those who have the love of Christ that brings passion and courage to be IN the world fully, and yet not of it, rise up and lead where others have only feared, controlled, or maximized the return on their investment.  May the true Church arise, and the shadow of western “fifedom” perish.

May we continually ask as leaders to be purged of our selfishness and poor choices so that God may be seen. As we are pure in following Him, then what Paul quoted in this passage of Romans will be true - His Word will be proved right and His judgments/perspectives will prevail in changing the world. This is when we will see His Kingdom and not our own.