Our churches today have polished websites. Lovely cafes or bookstores built into them. I’ve been to a church that has a massive indoor waterfall. They are visually stunning. They are smartly located in easy-to-access locations. They have ample parking. They hire consultants to help them craft their image and even their message to a certain extent. Heck, I do it myself. I’m writing this post while taking a break from preparing a Sunday School lesson that could easily be accused of being more entertainment than Biblical education.
Now let’s look at John the Baptist. The Bible says that people flocked into the wilderness to hear him speak and be baptized. And the wilderness we’re reading about wasn’t a lovely forest with fawns prancing about. This was brutal barren land. This was no place to put on a sermon if you expected a crowd. And the preacher? The Bible doesn’t really mince words here. John the Baptist pretty much looked like a lunatic.
No worship band. No café. No parking lot. Terrible location. John the Baptist did everything wrong. but wait… the people flocked to him. Why?
Because he told a compelling story. An entirely irresistible story. A captivating story. An amazing story. And remember, that when John was telling this story, we hadn’t even gotten to the most amazing part. Christ was still alive.
Do we have to choose between polish and passion? Well if we did, I’d have to say choose passion. But the fact is that we don’t have to choose. Keep the worship band. Expand the parking lot. Hire your consultants. And then on top of it all, preach the most amazing story ever told. Just like John the Baptist, they will flock to you.
Not a preacher? That’s okay. God planted something inside of you before you were even born just the way he did for John the Baptist. Remember how John jumped in Elizabeth’s womb when Mary arrived? God had planted John’s mission in him before he even saw the light of day. He did the same for you. It’s in there. That purpose, that witness you’ve been searching for is already in there.
Do what John did. Share it. It’s amazing! If you’ll let it be.
We were built to be heroes. It’s about time we started acting like heroes.