1.05.2009

With Our Doors

A week or two ago I was perusing our church website. It's recently redesigned and so I was clicking all the links, checking out the spread, when I found a little error... the Sunday School class I teach, Without Walls, was incorrectly listed as "With Our Doors". At first I laughed, because this is a typically Seth typo [no offense, Seth, it's just the truth]... But as I emailed him about it, a hard truth began to settle in. I realized that as much as we as a Body strive for a life without walls... what we usually achieve is a life with our doors.

Doors that we open and close at will. Doors that we use to let people see what we want them to see. Even our best attempts at transparency, when we feel as though we are letting others see the dark side of our thought lives, can be veiled attemps to garner appreciation or affirmation or sympathy. I've done that. I've unloaded on someone and then said "just trying to be transparent"... but I really want them to see how bad I have it or how poorly I've been treated [at least in my own mind]. Ouch.

Instead of living in complete unity as Christ asked us to do, we build denominational walls. Walls of gender. Walls of age. Walls of beliefs. Walls of status. And once we realize the call of Christ and determine to tear down those walls... more often than not we just end up installing more doors. Right? Installing a door to let this group in... but that one is still a little "too fringe" for me. A door to let these people in, but let's keep it shut on those folks that are so "strict" in their beliefs. What about the walls we've built around people who have hurt us? Those within our own church family who have stepped on our toes? What kind of doors to you have installed to let them in on some parts of you, and keep them out of others?

And what about those outside the four walls of our church buildings? What about the lost and dying world we encounter every single day... How many walls do we have built there? How many friends do you have that are non-believers? How do you respond to brothers and sisters in Christ who have walked away from the faith? Jesus had no walls when it came to people... he taught in the synagogue and then ate with sinners. He met the demon-possessed and repentent with the same kind of grace. He still does. Do we?

And worst of all, are the doors we have installed in our relationship with Christ. Do you still have walls built around parts of your heart? Do you still have a door to the world, a place where you can go and visit at will without that pesky Jesus hanging over your shoulder? Hmmm? I do. Have you built a wall of justification around the sins in your life? I have!

I'm going to be transparent here. I don't like writing this right now! And I'm not looking for affirmation or sympathy or any of that. I'm telling you that this revelation has been MIGHTILY convicting for me. I'm not preaching at you friends, He's preaching at me. I've had this nagging thought since I read "with our doors"... and it's taken me at least two weeks to put this post to screen because therein lies the conviction.

I haven't torn down the walls in my life.

I have installed doors.

And I have comforted myself with the thought that with a nice big door- there's LESS wall there.

But there can't be a door without a wall, can there?

I do want to live a life without walls. I want to be transparent, honest, real... I want to get myself out of the way so that Jesus can do His work... in me and in this world. I want to live in unity with my brothers and sisters in Christ. I want to love this lost and dying world with the same passion Christ does. I want to mourn for those who don't know Him. I want to speak to the hearts hardened against Him. But mostly I want more of Him. I want to live FOR HIM. I don't want what this world has for me, because all it has is death and disappointment... but in Christ I find fulfillment and LIFE. Who would want to build a wall around THAT? And with more of Him, friends, the walls will come down. As we seek to become more like Christ we will stop installing doors and instead begin the work of steadily chipping away at the walls.

I am often reminded that one of the last things Christ asked the Father for in the Garden, was that we would live in unity. Why? So that the world would see that and KNOW that Christ was the real deal. And complete unity has no walls. It just can't. We may not get there this side of eternity friends, but Jesus is asking us to try... and the only walls we have control over are the ones we built ourselves. So lets start pecking away and then stand amazed as God moves!!!

3 comments:

Lauren said...

Brilliant.

and

Dang it.
(you know what that means.)

Christy said...

Chills..

Profound Becky

Thanks for putting it to screen!

Elle MD said...

I got here by way of Christy's blog. And I'm really glad I did. Wow, this is true for so many of us. I'll work on it too. Thanks!