Have you ever had to use one of those maps where they tell you exactly where you are? You know the ones that are stationed somewhere in an amusement park or tourist area? They do a great job of informing you of not only where you are but also what is around you, all so that you can get to where you are going. The thing about those maps, especially when you are in a an amusement park, is that you only need them when you have a specific destination. If your just aimlessly wandering around the park willing to jump on any ride that crosses your path then you never really need to consult the map. However, if you have a certain ride in mind that you just can't wait to get too but you aren't sure exactly how to get there then you need that map.
I think a lot of Christians are out there walking through this Christian life aimlessly. They got saved and go to church but there just doesn't seem to be a purpose to their walk. They just jump on whatever ride they come across that looks appealing to them and get what thrills they can out of it before hopping off and wandering to the next thing down the path. They aren't "bad" people or anything. They understand how amazing it is that they are even allowed into the park since they couldn't pay the price of admission. It was an awesome day they found out that the owner of the park paid the price for them. They are really grateful for what the owner and His son did just to get them in but that is where they stop. They are just glad to be here, happy to see the sights and ride the rides.
The bible tells that we ought to be doing something different.
Romans 12:4-5 For as we have many members in one body, but all the members do not have the same function, so we, being many, are one body in Christ, and individually members of one another.
Yes we are all in the park together but we all have different functions. Each of us has a certain ride that we are supposed to be at. Some of us are supposed to be over at the bumper cars and some of us are supposed to over at the big roller coaster. Others are supposed to be over in the water park area. We aren't supposed to wandering around jumping onto different rides or ministries. God has something specific for us to go and do.
The most amazing thing about it is that when we get there we aren't just supposed to jump on and ride. We are also supposed to take ownership of that particular ride. We are the riders and the maintenance crew. We are also the staff that helps others get on and checks the safety harnesses before takeoff. We are the ones offering to take someones baggage and set it off to the side so that they don't have to worry about dealing with it while they are carried to new heights and places.
I think this is just a part of what Paul was saying when he wrote that we have more than enough teachers but not enough fathers. We have plenty of people willing to go out and tell people about the park and how they can get in and enjoy the benefits. But, we don't have enough people in the park working the rides and taking ownership of their assigned areas. Sure we might be getting people into the park but what they are seeing once they are in there is broken down and falling a part. Most of the rides are shut down and closed for maintenance. The water park is full of algae because no one has been adding chlorine to the water. Sure there are a few bright spots and some rides that are up and running but most of the park is shut down.
Luke 10:2 Then He said to them, "The harvest truly is great, but the laborers are few; therefore pray the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into His harvest.
We need more laborers. We need younger laborers, who are willing to team up with the ones that have been doing this for a while so that they can be taught how to take care of things. We need the fresh outlook and energy of the younger ones to invigorate the older ones so that they can keep on working. There is a shift in the atmosphere. There is a change coming, call it whatever you want, an awakening, a revival, whatever. The time is coming that the Park is going to be running full tilt. Everything is going to get fixed and and put back into service. We've never seen anything like what is about to happen in the Kingdom. We've heard the stories of what happened when groups of people started up one more part of the park. We've celebrated for years over one more ride being restored to service. What's going to happen and what kind of stories could we tell once the whole park is up and running?
Phillip Reed is the Associate Pastor of Faith Chapel Ministries. His passion is to reconcile the lost to their Heavenly Father.