so every year there are things that i talk about that i truly believe will propel the church into uncharted territory [or at least into territory that it hasn’t occupied in quite a while].  the area of unbridled care for those around us, unfettered enthusiasm for others above ourselves.
many years my hopes for a true sea change in our approach to others falls short, my own life included here as well.

then today, while reading a blog by jon acuff suddenly much became clear.  we have difficulty seeing…

in the article linked above the question was asked if churches around the nation were cancelling sun. service due to Christmas falling on a sun.  interesting conversation, one that i had with leadership teams this year.  the comments were, by and large, in support of churches that would cancel service.  and there were some comments that opposed any cancellation of worship times for any reason.  the root of this objection is a vision issue.

back to unbounded giving & generosity…

each year that i talk about using Christmas as a time to make sure that we give of ourselves & our $$ to those who don’t have [this is not just an issue for those that live near us] it is usually met with modest support, “yes, we should do something like that.”  but that soon give way to “the list” of stuff we have to buy for friends & family and so on.  before we get too carried away, every time i talk about this subject i’m accused of trying to “steal” Christmas.  i’m not sure who i’m stealing it from with is conversation, but i digress…

here’s the long & short of it:  this conversation & others like it are short-lived because of our vision.  we tend to have myopic vision.  essentially, this is nearsightedness.  we can see clearly things up-close, but when trying to view things at a distance the pictures get fuzzy.


when things/issues/wars/etc. begin to affect the things we love/do/participate in; when what we want out of life gets disrupted or the “normal” is jostled we don’t like it.

so, when we talk about things like “you’re not cancelling worship services on Christmas day are you?!”  or considering changing some of your Christmas day purchases to benefit someone in a foreign country.  something like purchasing a goat or cow for a family in a 3rd world country so they’ll have a sustainable income [something they didn’t have before] we object.  “you want me to give my kids a picture of a flock of chickens in somewhere africa?  that sounds like lots of fun on Christmas day!”

this is myopic thinking & acting.

we MUST get beyond the things that make us most happy & comfortable.  consider others more important than ourselves.  this is a hard shift to make & i’m realizing that it’s probably cost me some close relationships & maybe even a job.  but this is the kind of conversation i think Jesus has with those He’s calling.