I grew up southern baptist. I still consider myself a southern baptist although I go to a church that isn’t really a denominational church. When you are raised up inside a comfortable institution, whether it be a church or even a school or community, you get a sense of ownership and pride about that thing. There are a lot of Oklahoman’s who believe with all their heart that OU is the best college of choice no matter what your field of study. It’s not really due to the institutions ranking or even their marketing. It’s just a natural, although sinfully prideful desire to be a part of the “good” side. We all tell stories about our lives and we all want those stories to make us out to be the hero. For a lot of Christians this extends to their view on church. My church is the good church, the right church, and thereby others are not quiet doing it right.
So why is that wrong? Well, lets be honest. We are all sinners and have fallen short of godliness. So that desire to justify ourselves to be the “good guy” is wrong. Not to be Debbie Downer, but that is the harsh reality we live in. When we fool our selves into believing that our sinful nature hasn’t impacted where we are in life, we limit our ability to change. The Church, being the body of Christ, although sacred and special in the eyes of God has historically missed the mark on numerous occasions. Flaws in the the church simply reflect the humanity of who the church is composed of. As Christians we should embrace our human flaws because it magnifies Gods grace and points to the power of Christ’s leadership in the church.
So why the rant? Because this is something we all struggle with in any and every church. I think it helps me to remember what it is the church is made of, and how it was intended to be formed by the forgiven. If every church in the USA would make an real effort to loose its individualistic identity and align itself as part of the greater body of the Church, it would drastically change how we approach domestic missions and directly influence the spiritual direction of our nation.