I don’t remember when I first joined social media, but I did so because several of my college friends had joined and it was a great way to connect with them. We initially reminisced about mission trips, funny times at different churches we ministered at and all of our blooper moments in front of people. It was great. Then it became something different – it was no longer us talking with each other, it was simply clicking a “like” button and there wasn’t a disappointment shared about missing each other because we see each other’s faces every day.
Sadly, I find this happens with the practice of “doing church.” We click “like” and there is no hunger for more of God’s presence or a longing to be with the body of Christ. Even more dangerous, we prepare our best picture of ourselves, we edit it down to hide every blemish, every flaw, and that’s what we present when we “do church.”
For leaders in ministry, this can be a slippery slope because we are entrusted with making sure church happens. I found in years of planning services, making sure announcements were tight, making sure transitions were not awkward, and the keys to songs complimented each other that at times I just “did church.”
At the end of a day, if everything seemed to go smoothly, I thought we accomplished our task, but the question I wasn’t asking was – Did the people meet with God and, more importantly, did I meet with God? Did I genuinely connect with Him, heart and soul? I don’t ever want to become so familiar with God that I lose my hunger for more of His presence, for more of His power, and for more of His indwelling in me.
I sit with this thought today: What is my desire as I lead others in meeting with my Savior? Is He my pursuit or am I so focused on crafting a service that I lose the reason I began in ministry so many years ago?
I recently watched a movie that showed a boat slowly going off course just by a few degrees and because of that the waves took the boat miles and miles off course. Just like our pursuit to connect with friends we have lost touch with on social media can so easily go off course from what we originally intended, so can our pursuit of the One we serve.
Leaders: When we do church, let’s make sure our aim is to first be the church and then to respond to our bridegroom’s pursuit of His bride with love, affection, and adoration.