Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Where Their Name Is Known And We Are Glad They Came

I never watched it more than a couple of times, but Cheers was very popular with a significant segment of American culture throughout the late 80’s and early 90’s. The show was really about a “small group”… a former pro relief pitcher, an author, a business woman, a homemaker, a politician, an accountant, a mailman, two psychiatrists, and a coach… that met each week for refreshment, relaxation, to chat and to have fun. Though very different, the characters had one thing in common… they each wanted to take a break from the worries of life and go to a place where everybody knew their name and was glad that they came. And so they did… every week they went to a bar where their names were known and each was glad the other came.

There is a lesson we should learn from Cheers… people are lonely and looking for a place where they can be loved. Don’t kid yourself, MOST people go to bars, clubs (Moose, Elks, etc.), casinos, and the like because the members (those who frequent the establishments) know their name and are glad they came. It’s not so much alcohol and gambling as it is fun and friendship that people are longing for. I KNOW! Before coming to Christ, I frequented bars and night clubs (when you catch your breath, read Ephesians 2:1-10) and it was always about belonging. And, I might add, I never had a bad experience among those people, which is something I cannot say about my years among church people. Don’t get me wrong… I’m not condoning a certain lifestyle… I am condemning a certain lifestyle among Christians… specifically acting like it’s all about us. I’m not sure where we got that idea, but I am certain that it WASN’T from Jesus.

My hope and prayer for FBC Woodward in these days, is that very soon, we will be known as the people of God who are in Woodward with Woodward in our hearts. The elitist, country club understanding of church is wobbling on its last leg, a fresh wind is beginning to blow… we are close to being over ourselves and in love with God and people. It won’t be long until we know their names and we are glad they came. And, yes… I’m excited about it! You should be too.

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