One thing I love about spring is being able to golf. I am not what you would call an avid golfer. Like many people I know, at times I show signs of absolute brilliance. At other times, I play as if I had never picked up a club before. Usually it's a mix of both when I play a round.
But like most things in life, I can't expect too much if I only hit the range once or twice a year. Not much will happen if I don't hit buckets of balls before I play. If I spend little time perfecting my shot, there's a good chance I won't improve. When I only golf about every two weeks or so, it's hard to perfect my game.
However, last year my lovely wife got me three lessons to help me improve my drives. I changed my stance, grip, how I addressed the ball (hello there white ball!), my takeaway and follow through. And it worked! My drives now go much further and most of the time straighter.
Like a Zen master of golf, I was able to: see the ball, feel the ball, be the ball. And as a result I am enjoying the game as much as I ever have.
As the church of Christ, too often we don't practice, never seek to improve, are familiar with where we are, and yet wonder why our church is shrinking. What do I mean? There are many great books, seminars, and amazing church leaders who understand what it takes to grow a church. But if we never seek to glean from them what we are able to apply in our own church setting, our game...er, the church we are at will never get better.
Some folks believe that if we just pray harder, seek God, and improve sermons, the church will grow. Though those are extremely important, I think we need more.
Like the occasional golfer who just keeps tinkering on his own to improve his game, frustration will set in. And eventually he'll sell the clubs or throw them in the lake and go do something else for fun. Likewise, we stop being the church when we refuse to seek, grow, learn, and be filled with wisdom from others God has placed in our path.
Therefore, I propose we all adopt a new mantra: SEE the Church, FEEL the Church, BE the church. Are you ready to tee it up? Let's be the church!