Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Mega Churches, My Feelings?


Someone asked me what I think is better, A local Church, even if small, or one of these ever increasing Mega Churches? I have been, and still am, involved in both. So I wanted to take some time today, not to convince you of how YOU feel, but to answer the question on how I feel about the Topic. First impression?

Local Church

Small, or even Larger, made up of people in the neighborhood. Some of the larger ones, or some of the more "Anointed" or Popular ones, might find people diving from more distances. These tend to be more focused of local Communities and more local Causes. The more "Blessed" ones, the ones with a healthy income of Tithes and Offerings, may even join in Partnerships with other Ministries. May even try to Pay some of the Volunteers.

When you Attend, or Volunteer in Local Churches, the people there become as extended Family. They know when you fail to show up. They look forward to seeing you. You lean on them in time of need, they lean on you. You can feel the love and genuine concern. You feel as if you, and you DO, actually MEAN something. You can SEE where your Tithe and Offerings go.

Mega Church

Tens of Thousands of People. People from all over the World. Multiple Campuses. Video Messaging from the Founding Pastor. Local Pastors who are nothing more than Glorified Announcers. Seems to be most concerned with continuing to grow even larger. Partner with other Ministries that benefit the Mega Church or Founding Pastor. {Credit, Money, Fame, ETC.}

When people Volunteer, some expect to be paid, or they themselves are looking for Fame and Power as well. If you are an Attender, they do not even know if you are there or not. They do not really care either way. It's a Show. Oh they want your money. But it's a SHOW. The Worship portion is like a Rock Show with lasers and smoke. You hear how great they are and all the things the have done. You hear the Message, give your offering, and then you go home. They do NOT know you. They do not know what you are going through. They are just there.

In-depth thought?

I prefer the Local Church. Look, there are 5 of us. Me, my Wife, and my three Minions, uh, I mean Kids. We do not visit anywhere. We INVADE. We take over. Anytime we go somewhere, you can find Joshua, the oldest, offering free hugs, and genuinely concerned with the feelings of others there. You will find every Female there surrounding Eli. Eli hamming it up and hearts melting. And of course, Princess Maya Shying away from the attention. Oh yeah, you may not see me and my Clan coming, but I guarantee you know we were there.

So we were in a small, and I do mean small, local Church. If for some reason we could not make it, there was genuine concern. Where is Peter? Where is his Family? I hope all is well with them. They then had to come up with a substitute, or fill in, to Usher.

Well, for various reasons, we decided to move on. I truly feel God called us to check out this other Church at the time. It turned out to be a Mega Church. It was as I describe above. A Show. Oh, they do a lot. Please do not misunderstand. They own an entire Street in a down and out area, where they have safe places for Women and Children. They have all these GREAT things they do. They took up an offering. ONE, offering. Made 2.5 MILLION Dollars. That kinda blew me away. The Local Church I was attending couldn't even pay the Pastor what he should be getting. 2.5 Million??

So what was my conclusion of the choice between the local and the Mega Church? Well, I returned to the local Church. I started to see a rebirth and growth of the Church with new Leadership. I am still looking to take a more active role. We have seen people come back, and new people come. Our Kid Ministry is up and GROWING. The more people that come and Join the Church, the better off it will be and the more we will be able to do.

The Mega Church, didn't even know we where there. Even me and my whole Crew. I ended up going to the Hospital for like a week. No one from the Church came to visit. No phone calls. Nothing. Had this happened before, or now, I have no doubt at all, that there would be phone calls and visits.

Then you do have the whole Money thing. I understand that the dream for most Pastors is to Pastor a Mega Church. In their Hearts, MOST, even dream of all the good they could do with a Tithe and Offering total of $100,000.00 plus a week.. Let's face it, it would be nice to not have to worry about paying the Electric Bill.

But let's also face reality.
"For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows." {1 Timothy 6:10}
I have been in a Larger Church where the Pastor took a $5000.00 a week Salary. Not just the Pastor, but his Wife as well as his Brother.. There is no Board there. There is no accountability there. It was HIS Church and HIS Will, and HIS Way. The Sermons turned into Money and ME, ME, ME.

Just this past Month in the News was the fact that The Journey Church removed Pastor Darrin Patrick from his Post due to "Pastoral Misconduct," according to several reports. There are many more reports just like this in history. There will be many more.

Even with the best of intentions, when one is faced with large amounts of Money, temptations can become overwhelming. Couple this is the shear POWER and Control that a Pastor of a Mega Church has? People throwing themselves at them. Willing to do whatever they ask them to? Then you have the Temptation  of Abuse and of Affairs. Where Pastors of small Churches are more concerned with the Lives and well being of those that attend and continuing to grow the Church by reaching out to the lost. My Opinion.

Why do so many like the Mega Churches? Simple. They do not want to get involved.
"So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God." {Romans 10:17}
So they come and watch the Show. They Sing. Praise God. Hear the Message. Feel Good. Go Home. A lot of them do not even care if you acknowledge their presence. They go home and feel good. They went to Church. They fulfilled their obligation. They even gave their Tithes and Offerings. I really do not think that there is anything necessarily wrong with that. But that is all they really get.

In a local Church, you need to be involved. Oh, you still have those that would rather just come and watch the show and go, but you also have those that look forward to Serving. I know the Regulars that come every week. I know their Hopes and Dreams. I know their Health. I am part of their Lives. They are my Family. As Jesus total us..
"While he yet talked to the people, behold, his mother and his brethren stood without, desiring to speak with him. Then one said unto him, Behold, thy mother and thy brethren stand without, desiring to speak with thee. But he answered and said unto him that told him, Who is my mother? and who are my brethren? And he stretched forth his hand toward his disciples, and said, Behold my mother and my brethren! For whosoever shall do the will of my Father which is in heaven, the same is my brother, and sister, and mother."{Matthew 12:46-50}
So in Conclusion.

It really depends on your Preference. You can easily get lost and just show up when you chose to, in a Mega Church. You can get Spiritually Fed, and enjoy the Show. Or? If you are seeking a more personal relationship with God, and you are seeking more than just a show, then I would recommend a Local Church. Volunteer and help the Pastor / Pastors, grow the Church. Be the Sower of the Seed. Be a Child of God.

Whatever you chose. Just remember this one thing. Make sure that at the Core of the Teaching of that Church is Jesus. And one last thought to the Pastors out there. I understand the Dream. TRUST me. But be careful. There really is such a thing as too big. Just saying..

Do you know Jesus as your Savior? Have you been adopted into the Family of God? If not, say this Prayer. Right now. Wherever you may be. Say it in your own words, and do not doubt in your heart. God will hear you. He will send the Spirit of Life to you. Let us Pray..

"Oh heavenly Father, Lord God. I am a sinner. I know this. I know there is nothing I can do to change that. But I know you can. I accept Jesus's sacrifice for me. I repent my sins. Please send the Spirit of Adoption into my life. Help me to get to know the real you. Save me. Please. In the name of Jesus, Amen!"

That's it. It really is that simple. Now go tell someone what you have just done. "That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved." {Romans 10:9} You need to find a Church that God leads you to, and be Baptized the way Jesus said to be. You are now a Child of God. A new Creature. You "have put off the old man with his deeds, and have put on the new man, which is renewed in knowledge after the image of him that created him." {Colossians 3:10}

If you want to tell me, or comment, question, give testimonials, or just say "Hi," the Email is opntalk@gmail.com

The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Ghost, be with you all. Amen. {2 Corinthians 13}

Until next time, be Blessed, be a Blessing, and Jesus IS Lord..

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