Friday, October 12, 2012

the locAAl church


This morning I was thinking about the local church and Alcoholics Anonymous. (I am not sure why. I don’t ask questions. I just let the thoughts come as they please.) I decided to check out their website and here is what I found:
 
Alcoholics Anonymous® is a fellowship of men and women who share their experience, strength and hope with each other that they may solve their common problem and help others to recover from alcoholism. The only requirement for membership is a desire to stop drinking. There are no dues or fees for AA membership; we are self-supporting through our own contributions. AA is not allied with any sect, denomination, politics, organization or institution; does not wish to engage in any controversy, neither endorses nor opposes any causes. Our primary purpose is to stay sober and help other alcoholics to achieve sobriety.
 
This statement caused me to ask a few questions about the local church.
 
What if the local church started operating like an AA group?
What if we set aside our differences and focused on our similarities?
What if the local church was open about our common problem?
 
Here is what it would look like:
 
The local church is a fellowship of men and women who share their experience, strength and hope with each other that they may solve their common problem and help others to recover from their sinful nature. The only requirement for membership is a desire for holiness. There are no dues or fees for local church membership; we are self-supporting through our own contributions. The local church’s only association is with Jesus Christ. Our primary purpose is to remain holy and help other sinners achieve a state holiness.
 
I am not saying that AA has the perfect model for the local church, but it’s probably a good starting point.
 
I mean, just think about it this way >>> If you were to enter an AA meeting, you would find people who had their last drink 30 minutes before the meeting, people who had their last drink 30 years ago, and everyone in between. The only requirement for membership is to be an alcoholic and to have a desire for sobriety.
 
This should be our starting point. Inside the walls of the local church you will find people who are just starting to struggle with their sin nature, people who have struggled with it for years, and everyone in between. The only requirement for membership is to be a sinner and have a desire for holiness.
 
Maybe the church needs to begin each service with each member standing before the congregation and saying, “Hi, my name is Marc Grimes and I am a sinner who desires to become holy.”
 
Grace & Peace, Marc

1 comment:

  1. Wow,

    So glad I clicked this link in your profile. Such great words of truth here. This has been a conversation that has run rapid with a friend and I about meeting people where they are in their sins. Because we're all sinners and we all fall short. We all have a story and part of our story is being able to expose our sins without judgement. I pray we get there.

    Great post, I need to visit here often

    @InciteFaith

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