Tag Archives: Luke

There is No “I” in Church

Tuesday Re-mix –

When they heard this, they raised their voices together in prayer to God. “Sovereign Lord,” they said, “you made the heavens and the earth and the sea, and everything in them. You spoke by the Holy Spirit through the mouth of your servant, our father David:

“‘Why do the nations rage
    and the peoples plot in vain?
The kings of the earth rise up
    and the rulers band together
against the Lord
    and against his anointed one.

Indeed Herod and Pontius Pilate met together with the Gentiles and the people of Israel in this city to conspire against your holy servant Jesus, whom you anointed. They did what your power and will had decided beforehand should happen. Now, Lord, consider their threats and enable your servants to speak your word with great boldness. Stretch out your hand to heal and perform signs and wonders through the name of your holy servant Jesus.”  Acts 4:24-30

Church is not about me.  It is not even about my gifts or accomplishments or contributions to the mission.  I think that is one of the things I find most attractive about it.

I found this photo from the 2005 New York Yankees’ Old-timers game at the old Yankees Stadium in the Bronx.  It’s got  Whitey Ford (16), Yogi Berra (8), Reggie Jackson (44), Don Mattingly (23), Ron Guidry (49), Rich Goose Gossage (54), Paul O’Neill (21), Scott Brossius (18), Ed Figueroa (25) and Chris Chambliss (10).  I love it because these all-time great players were still wearing traditional Yankee uniforms WITHOUT their names on the backs.

Putting players’ names on the back of their jerseys was reportedly the brainchild of White Sox owner, Bill Veeck in 1960.  I am truly sorry he had that idea.  Feel free to call me a hopeless …

Good-sized Vision v. God-sized Vision

Tuesday Re-mix –

Then they gathered around him and asked him, “Lord, are you at this time going to restore the kingdom to Israel?”  Acts 1:6

“But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.”  Acts 1:8

For both churches and individuals, there is a difference between a good-sized vision and a God-sized vision.  Which do you have?  Great story about this in Acts 1.

I am thinking this had to be a disturbing and frightening scenario for the disciples who, for almost three years, had awakened each morning and simply allowed Jesus to set the agenda for the day.  The only thing he asked of them was that they follow him.  It was an easy arrangement, one that led them through amazing and miraculous moments and obviously changed them forever.  Now, Jesus was leaving them and telling them “you guys take it from here…go and do this ministry!”

“Wait.  What?”

With this, the most significant revolution this world has ever known or will ever know was begun.  The church was born.  Your local body of believers and my local body of believers (and every local church around the world) all call ourselves followers…soldiers in this revolution.  But the question this passage raises in my mind is this: am I an Acts 1:6 follower or an Acts 1:8 follower?  Additionally, which is my church?

These disciples had an impressive vision…one found in scripture and supported by nothing short of a promise from God: they envisioned an Israel no longer under Rome’s thumb nor its puppet governors…an Israel who once again was on top of the world, boasting strength and numbers and the support of the sovereign …