In life, most people at one point or another need some guidance or help to get through hard times in their life.
While individuals grieve, hurt and suffer in different ways, we all need to find the answers to our problems.
Wouldn’t it be great if all people had access to these answers and help along the way?
At the heart of why humans suffer is the fact that we were created to fellowship with God, yet we are separated from Him.
We are born with a void in our lives.
Infants are totally dependent on another human to sustain their life. Usually this is a loving mother and father who do the best they can to meet these needs.
Parents oftentimes teach their children beliefs about God and encourage the child in a relationship, hopefully leading up to eventually filling up the void. But what happens to the infant who is dependent on someone who is lost and hurting?
They can’t help nurture a child to find something that they themselves do not have.
When a child is born into a family who is lost and has no idea how to fill the terrible void, the child becomes caught up in the pain and hardship of life. What happens then? We perpetuate generations of people who are lost and hurting. We find deterioration of the family unit and a decay of society.
We are living this harsh reality now.
People are not able to find the support and answers they need in the family, from the workplace, not from the worldly influence of television or social media. I hate to say it, but they are not getting guidance from the church, either.
The unchurched person does not want to be judged or demeaned. The raw nerves of most hardworking Americans caught in the painful cycle of life have no patience for hypocrisy.
They don’t need to be reminded from the pews or the pulpit that they are in some way not good enough for the churchgoers or God. They don’t have the time to be the worker bees of the church, taking kids, going to classes, serving on committees or sitting in meetings.
It takes every ounce of energy they have to get through the week and get everything done. Giving the church 10 percent of their income is not an option, either, because the bills aren’t getting paid as things are, let alone if they gave tithes.
The church has its own set of problems. The churchgoers have expectations of what they have grown to receive from the church experience. Most pastors have a full-time job just keeping the peace within their current congregation over music style and power struggles.
They can’t spend too much energy or time seeking out the unchurched, knowing this group will take much attention and result in very little tithing.
So what are we to do when we need God but church may not the answer for the masses?
I believe God is insisting that the Christians step up. Christians have become passive, because it seems that it is no longer acceptable to take a public stand for our beliefs. It is much easier to remain silent than to argue with the atheist down the street over whose rights are more important.
We have to draw a line somewhere in the sand and decide if we are willing to be a missionary in the United States. In our town, right here, today.
It’s great that we have so many mission opportunities in Third World countries and we need to support those. But look around Christians, the United States needs some Jesus.
The task seems daunting. It is easier to send money to build schools in Africa, or go teach mothers about general childcare in Cambodia. We know how to do that.
We are fearful of what we don’t know. What we don’t know Is how do we help fill this void in our own country?
All I can think is that we have to get in line with Jesus ourselves. Read His words every day and mimic Him. Use His love, His actions every day to those around us that need it so badly.
We must be the church, each and every one of us, independently. We must have a strength and dedication that we have never had before.
We must surround ourselves with others who are committed to this cause and support each other. The corporate church needs to equip its members for this mission field.
I pray that this becomes a new burning desire in our lives.
(Rhonda Sexton is an author and inspirational speaker. She lives in Neosho with her husband and children. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 417-389-1222.)