By God’s grace, I grew up in a Christian home where both my parents were strong, godly people, who love God, love His Word, and love His church. They were committed to daily reading of the Bible, daily prayer, daily confession of sin, daily applying the truths of God’s precious Word in every aspect of life, and daily applying the Word to their children’s lives. Furthermore, they knew, from Scripture, that the church was a place of worship and fellowship and therefore committed themselves to the building up of the body in anyway God would have them. This meant 25+ years as volunteer youth leaders, a few years of college ministry, my dad serving as an elder for a number of years, and now leading a Bible study for older saints. My parents are not theologically trained, nor did they ever attend a Bible college or seminary. They are people who have been saved by God’s grace and have given to Him their whole lives. I am grateful for the legacy I have been given from my parents and I pray that God would allow me to honor them (and Him) by continuing to live the many live lessons they taught me from the Bible throughout the rest of my life.
With all that said, I hope that all families (particularly professing “Christian” homes) would want their children to be this way. Here is where I am concerned.
I did not grow up in the Bible-belt, but I now find myself living in the Bible-belt (Arkansas). It is beautiful here. The fall colors were amazing. My wife and loved to go out for a drive and just enjoy God’s beautiful creation. The people are nice. The food is fried and yummy (although I have to keep a close eye on my waist line). The church we attend is incredible because of the excellent Bible-teaching and lovely fellowship. All in all, this is a great place to live. Yet, living here for the short time I have, I have discovered something that disturbs me and I believe it a very BIG problem.
Before I tell you the problem, you have to understand that in this part of the country Christianity seems to saturate this Bible-belt culture. In other parts of this country, if you go to church you are labeled as unintelligent, weak, religious, etc. That is the kind of culture I grew up in. No one talks about church because no one else cares. You only talk about church to church-going people. Well, that is the exact opposite here. Everyone goes to
church. There is a church building on seemingly every corner. I live exactly 1.4miles from my church. On the way to my church, I pass by 5 other churches. If I took a different route, I could easily get to 10-12. It blows my mind away. Everyone talks about what their church is doing AND they all pray before meals. The culture here is saturated with Christianity, even to the point of schools shutting down all Wednesday night activities because of church. If you are in the Bible-belt, you know what I am talking about. If you have never been here, yes this is what goes on.
So what is the problem with this? Doesn’t this sound like the kind of place all Christians want? It almost sounds utopian, right?
Not on your life. There is a HUGE problem with this Christianity culture and it needs to be addressed. In fact, I would be willing to bet that there are many churches all over American and maybe around the world that have this same problem. So, again, it needs to be addressed.
My plan today was to write about this problem (that I have yet to define), but then I came in contact with a blog that already took care of this issue and I thought he did a better job (with pictures!) that I would have done here. So I am going to punt to him today. Here is his two links:
I pray that this will be helpful to some, rebuking for others, and that in the end you and I would continue to seek after the God of the Bible and learn to love what He loves and obey Him in how He has commanded.