Throughout the last several decades, anti-intellectualism has plagued the church in America. It seems now more than ever, Christians are content with knowing very little about their faith. I believe some pastors and teachers have aided to this epidemic by replacing sound doctrine and expository preaching with watered down messages of moralism, self-help, and prosperity. Their aversion to teach theology and doctrine from the pulpit has caused many Christians to develop a similar disposition.
“Have you made God smile today?” Such a simple question stirs a myriad of feelings inside me, like frustration, relief, and sadness. I’m frustrated by the implications of that question, namely that God isn’t smiling at us until we do something to earn it. I can remember growing up in church and hearing this idea taught…when I’m good and obey the rules, I make God smile. I even had a kids’ cassette tape with Christian songs and little skits, one of which was all about “making HIM smile,” by doing various good deeds.
Our focus is Christ, Scripture says..."all things are possible," and if that be truth, then "Can I bring God back in my mind-flow every few seconds so that God shall always be in my mind as an after image, shall always be one of the elements in every concept and precept? I choose to make the rest of my life an experiment in answering this question."
In today’s culture we want God to be safe. Have you ever heard someone say, “My God wouldn’t do that”? This thought doesn’t just plague the culture but it plagues our churches. In doing so we open up to the temptation of giving into sinful cultural norms in fear of rejection. We have made a false idol out of who we want God to be, verses who He is.
Dear VGF, I would like to thank so many of you for praying for my cousin Charles Ford and many thanks to those of you that have sent him letters of encouragement. This past weekend Charles and I have started to converse and "catch up" on e-mail. He is an encouragement to myself and many others as we chat about the Lord, our heritage and this direct physical intrusion into his life this past year in the hospital
I often feel the impact of the gospel while driving my three kids around in the van, because that is often when I most clearly see my depravity and need for a Savior. My sinful grids include a lot of lies about where my value and worth lie, mainly in my own performance.