Friday, January 11, 2013

Squirrel Shirts and Worn-Out Jeans

When it comes to matters of fashion, let's just say I'm not the guy you want advice from.

Squirrel shirt in 52XL? "Sure!"

Neon pink fanny pack? "Only if I can have one, too!"

Overalls and a tank top? "Can I give you my helicopter hat to accessorize?"

While fashion might not be my strength, I will say that I've noticed a trend change throughout the years: worn-out jeans. When I was about 15, these were all the rage. And when I say rage, I'm talking charging bull. People couldn't get enough of them. Youngsters were selling their arms and legs so they could have them, an action which made it really difficult to put on said jeans. All in all, it was a fiasco.

It wasn't uncommon to hear stuff like, "I want the jeans the raggedy tear right along the inner thigh, so people know I'm hardcore when I wear my spaceship undergarments," or, "Is it normal to have a breeze running along my hindquarters?"

Now, as a few years have passed, I've noticed the whole trend change a little. Jeans are still washed-out, but holes don't make much of an appearance nowadays. For whatever reason, the holes have started to disappear from our jeans and appear in other places.

Like our churches.

If there's one thing that you don't want to appear old and weathered by time, it's the church. The one place in the world where people have historically sought life and energy from is instead quickly deteriorating into a washed-out opportunity to have a social hour. Instead of being a place for challenge and conviction, we've allowed the holes from our jeans to become the holes in our theology. The church, which is called to be separate and different from the rest of society has become another pair of nondescript, garden-variety jeans that makes no effort to step above the sea of religion.

Well, to solve the crisis of the worn-out church, I don't suggest anything new. My solution does not consist of jumping into something fresh, but rather to dive into something really, really old.

“A Bible that’s falling apart usually belongs to someone who isn’t.” - Charles Spurgeon

My solution is to transition from a worn-out church to a church with worn-out Bibles. Since the church is made of people, it becomes the individual's responsibility to make sure that they wear down their Bibles with constant use, and that they wear out their jeans with constant prayer. We aren't called to come up with the next, crazy fix that'll take care of what's wrong with us. We are called to radically apply ourselves to the simplicity of the Scriptures and fellowship with God.

"But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves." (James 1)


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