Every year my church does a survey, they call it the A, B, C, D's to gauge where people are in their faith who attend the services. The questions go something like this:
1. Are you ready to admit Jesus died for your sins?
2. Begin your journey, be baptized?
3. Committed? To being a part of the church and discovering His plan and purpose for your life?
4. Do nothing. I don't plan on ever being baptized or admitting Jesus in the only way into Heaven. I only come to make my loved ones happy.
Each year they have noticed a trend. A thru C usually doubles with little to no change to D. However, in the last few years they have noticed D has doubled. People are content to attend service and say they are a church attender, but have zero desire to live a life that speaks to this.
I shouldn't be surprised this number has doubled, but it did take me back.
And, then I read this article (I'm only linking to it for you to read for yourself. I contemplated not because I didn't want to bring it anymore attention than it has. But chances are you have probably ready it too) by Glennon Doyle Melton. Glennon for a while has been one of my favorite online bloggers.
I think this is why I was so shocked, sad, and then somewhat angry.
Thousands of people agreed with Glennon in her post (please go read, if you would like to know fully what I am referring to). While I agree that we are to love and live like Jesus. I do believe that Jesus died for us on Good Friday so that all who believe will go to Heaven.
Believing and preaching any differently is only loving people to hell. It's popular to "preach" peace, love, and unity-because that is the way of Jesus- but to leave out a very important component that there is only ONE way into heaven-not many, like she believes, is downright dangerous.
You can't say, "heaven" is what we make of it, so go find your way to heaven, whichever path that may be and whoever God is to you, and one day we'll all link hands and be together in the after life.
And we also can't say, "Heck! Why can't heaven be something we create, right here?! By golly that sounds like a wonderful idea! Let's do that! The Bible didn't really mean what it says, let's change it to make it sound better and to be something we are comfortable with. M'kay?"
So many people, so many shouted, "Hallelujah, Thank you!, Good Word, Truth!" in the comments.
Sadly, even Christians.
We all know some Christians have gotten a bad rap and have tarnished the good name of what being a Jesus follower is all about. They use their Bibles as a weapon, slinging verses at the sinners hoping they burn in hell, there are hypocrites, and fear-mongers. But we also know, these are a loud few.
"But how can they call on Him they have not believed in? And how can they believe without hearing about him? And how can they hear without a preacher? And how can they preach unless they are sent? As it is written: How beautiful are the feet of those who announce the gospel of good things!" Romans 10: 14-15
We are carriers of the word of God. We are able to spread the gospel in ways that generations before us could not imagine. We hold the keys to influence a fire for the gospel in our realm of influence.
And, we have freedom of speech.
It's dangerous to use influence to tell people what they want to believe and hear. I believe Glennon loves others deeply and I believe she is a "spiritual" person. A christian? I'm not sure (only God knows another person's heart).
You can either love people to heaven in the name of Jesus or you are going to people please and love them straight to hell.
When our fear of not getting man's approval is stronger than not getting God's, we are in trouble. Big trouble.
I prayed for Glennon, and then I unfollowed her. Was this right or wrong? I don't know. But I do know I felt strongly convicted not to support her New Age, Oprah-y message of create your own heaven on earth, Jesus is whomever you think he is, and the many paths into heaven.
It's not truth.
Tell me...what is your opinion on the New Age message? If you read the article, what is your take on it?
Here's another link you might be interested in...Do All Paths Lead to God?
Linking with: #TellHisStory, Coffee For Your Heart, Three Word Wed, Thought Provoking Thurs