Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Change the Subject

About that time there arose no little disturbance concerning the Way.
-- Acts 19:23

These men who have turned the world upside down . . .
-- Acts 17:6

We desperately need to change the subject in our cities. The Church has become wallpaper in too many of them. We recede into the background, staying indoors, safe and avoidable in our religious cubbyhole.

The Ephesian idolmakers rioted because they were put out of business, not by Christians protesting their industry in the parking lot, but by the pervasive spread of the gospel in the city.

We are not responsible for fruit. We are responsible for faithfulness.

God, no little disturbances, please. Please send big ones. Come down, disrupt, break things. Make us dust to breathe new life into us again. So that the Way may create no little disturbance for your glory again.

Help us to want what your servant Spurgeon calls "a glorious disorder." Make us want to be bowled over. Cultivate astonishment in us.

Teach us how to and empower us to change the subject.

Declare these things; exhort and rebuke with all authority. Let no one disregard you.
-- Titus 2:15

8 comments:

Bob Spencer said...

whoa

Bob Spencer said...

Not "whoa" as in stop or slow down, but whoa as in, that's very awesome!

Aidan said...

Amen. So be it.

Mike said...

"Wallpaper"...how painfully true.

Rob and Mary said...

How true, the American church needs to move beyond living in comfort. There is a great cloud of witnesses urging us to strive for more.
Let us turn our nation on end, so that our Saviour may be glorified. On end by demonstrating mercy, love and justice where it is not seen or felt.

Jason said...

Amen!

Rob Westbrook said...

I've been studying Acts 17:1-6 and the events in Thessalonica. I came up with four questions for my church and myself.

Are we a threat to turn our world upside down?

Are the people of our community talking about our impact?

Are we doing anything that will disturb our community?

Is our presence leading people to make eternal decisions?

Praying and working toward "YES" to all the above.

Ray Ortlund said...

Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.