THE CHURCH BEING THE CHURCH: Fielding a Team to Defeat the Powers of Darkness
I have to confess that watching what is happening to our country is stressful to me.
I guess it’s the old football coach in me. My nearly 55 years of athletic competition has taught me a lot about how a good team best functions. In fact, I devoted my entire career to rebuilding faltering programs, putting together a solid “team” structure, and tinkering with methods that could best make a diverse group of people function effectively as a unit.
“Team-building” skills have become an art form that corporations spend millions of dollars instilling in their executives. There are no real tricks to it, even though hucksters market their “programs” on how to “coach” your team. The entire essence of team-building techniques can be distilled down to two simple words: Unity and Vision.
Nothing can be accomplished unless the team is unified. You can't work it up. You can't fabricate it. You can't create it through the use of slogans. Unity is something that can only happen when hearts are melded together through a common vision. The vision becomes the driving force.
Vision creates unity. As I often asked the young people that I had coached, “How will you know when you’ve arrived if you don't first know where you’re going?”
Vision is not sight. Helen Keller is credited with making the statement that “the world is full of people who see yet have no vision.” Vision is peering beyond what your natural eyes can see. I often found myself saying to one of our players, “You haven't understood what you’ve been shown.” Mere “seeing” happens with your eyes, but vision is seeing with your heart.
My heart grieves for my grandchildren. I grieve that our churches seem to have so few solutions to the anti-Christian assault that we are currently under. Our pastors are willfully blind.
America's problems are both spiritual and moral. Christ is the only solution. Politicians can't save us. Money can't save us. Government can't save us. The courts can't save us. Faux News can't save us. Rush Limbaugh can't save us. There can be no political solution to a spiritual problem.
America is spiritually dead. Only true revival can breathe life back into this nation.
The institutional “church” is incapable of winning the cultural war. It is supposed to be a living organism, but it has become a business...a corporation. Void of vision, their focus has become money. Money drives every corporation…even the church.
‘Di-vision’ means two-visions. Unless there is resolute vision (a goal), no team can effectively operate in the spirit of unity. Psalm 133 tells us that where there is unity, God will command the blessing. Blessings follow unity. The church is divided. Denomination is a math term (denominator) which is necessary for the splitting-up of the “whole” into smaller parts. The church is divided by denominations which dilutes the magnificent power of the Gospel. “One body, many members” is the way Paul described God's team. Today we have many bodies and no unity and no vision.
But one of the greatest divisors in the American church is race. Sunday morning at 10 AM is the church's most divided hour of the week. The idea of a “black” church and a “white” church should be anathema to the Body of Christ.
We have permitted political issues to divide us. Black Christians and white Christians should care about the same things. “Political” issues divide God's people. Lack of vision has caused us to be conquered. The vision is gone and with it the unity.
I am putting together a team...and I need your help.
For the past several years I have been actively working to cultivate relationships with black pastors across America. I am currently working with a small, committed group of these men to bridge the divide that is so crippling the church. I am convinced that the most dangerous weapon we can wield against the forces of darkness is a “church” with a unified front. Black Christians and white Christians joining together under the power of the Holy Spirit in Biblical unity is a force that the gates of hell cannot prevail against. That is the unstoppable “team” I am striving to assemble.
Although we are currently in the beginning stages, our goal is to assemble a unified front to boldly stand against the forces of darkness. We are planning a gathering of pastors this spring, black men and white men, who understand the call: men who are not prisoners to race, but bond-servants of Christ! They are men of God who are tired of being reduced to “colors” and who desire to lock arms and engage in spiritual battle against the forces of evil: men who share a resolute vision.
But this team cannot be organized without your help.
Once again, a battle is brewing in Montgomery, Alabama, over the issue of marriage. An astounding 81% of the citizens of Alabama, both black and white, went to the polls and declared that marriage is to be recognized only as the union of one man and one woman in the state of Alabama. The tyrannical Federal Courts are fighting to overturn the will of the people and the mandate of Almighty God.
This is the 1960's in reverse. Alabama was wrong in 1960, but they are right today. The courts were right in 1960, but are wrong today. Montgomery, Alabama, is shaping up as the Gettysburg of the marriage battle. Are we prepared to let Judge Moore stand alone? No! We need to get our team prepared.
Here is how you can help. Please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org with the name, email, and phone number of any black pastor you know of who is willing to stand for Biblical values. There is an underground rumbling in the black community as many come to the realization that our government has declared war on Christian values and that those values are far more important than the color of one's skin. We will personally contact each pastor and invite him to join our gathering in the spring.
There are far more “conservative” black pastors in America than we realize, but my black pastor friends tell me that most are afraid to come out of the conservative closet because they feel isolated. Many don’t know of any other conservative black pastors in their area. Our goal is to connect them with like-minded brothers in Christ who will affirm them and stand with them in the battle for truth.
We’ve received commitments from Caucasian pastors desiring to partner with us, but it is the black pastors that we desperately need to connect with. We simply cannot win this battle without them, and we are seeking your help to identify and reach out to them
It’s time that we set race aside and resolve to unite and defend the Christ we claim to serve. It’s time for us to assemble a team to counter the forces of darkness. It is time to come out of the denominational closet. If the homosexuals can take their cause to the streets, why can't Christians?
There will be no “stars” on this team, but simply men who fear God and love their children. We know they’re out there. Please help us find them.
I am tired of talking. Time is running short. It is time to get in the game.