Thursday, February 28, 2008

I'm a Hypocrite

Have you ever been hurt by a spouse and then heard the words, "I love you but . . ."? Have you ever wanted to say, "your action speak so loud, I can't hear what you are saying"? Have you ever had someone offer you some kind of help saying how much they just love to help people. They offer things like mentoring, helping you fix your car, baby-sitting, or helping you find a job, etc., and then you never hear about it again? Have you ever seen people chastise others for their own weaknesses?

In some of these cases, you would call the person a hypocrite. In other cases you are hurt by their otherwise good intentions.

What about all of the promises we make to God? Have you ever told God that you loved Him with all of your heart? That you would follow Him anywhere? That you would do anything for Him? Have you ever said silly things like "teach me patience" or "I want to share in your sufferings"? Have you ever said "Lord, I just want to hear from You"? "I really want to know you"?

I know I have. In fact yesterday morning, I was saying a few of them. And then it occurred to me, if I really want to know someone I have to spend lots of time with them. I have to make them a priority in my life. So I had to close my prayer that morning with "I'm sorry Lord, I'm a hypocrite." I decided I need to really try to get to know Him rather than just telling Him I want to know Him.

What if I spent 15-30 minutes talking to my wife in the morning, telling her how much I love her and want to know her better, then dumping all of my problems on her and asking her to fix my messes? Then I would call her every hour to tell her all the things I need from her and want her to do for me? Then I come in at night and do a lot good things like help with kids, laundry and dishes (no comment, Gina) but spend no time talking to her? Then when we go to bed, I can imagine her saying, " I thought you said this morning that you wanted to know me." I would probably respond, "I know honey, but it is late, maybe tomorrow." How would she feel?

I wonder if that is how God feels?

9 comments:

Anonymous said...

Hi,

I am trying to understand why you would want to start another church in Paris ?! There are already so many relevant evangelical churches, started by French people in Paris. Yes, there is still room for more, but how can Americans claim to create a French-relevant church in Paris? The best thing would be to get involved in a local church in Paris and serve there ...

As for church planting movements there are many in France which need support. Why not join them?

Thanks,

Ken Witcher said...

Anonymous,

Less than 1/2 of 1% of Parisians attend an evangelical church. We want to be relevant to that 99.5%. While we certainly can't be relevant to all of them, we want to start a church that would reach people who would never attend one of those churches. But we also want to have a relationship with existing churches because they will reach people that we will not. If someone comes to a church that we are part of and would prefer a different style, we want to know where we can send them, because we all have the same goal; to bring people into relationship with Jesus.

Anonymous said...

But that doesn't answer my question on why you would start a NEW church. Are you saying that all churches in Paris are irrelevant? Have you identified a gap?

Thanks,

Ken Witcher said...

I am not saying that all churches in Paris are irrelevant. Each church is relevant only to the people they are reaching or will reach. The existing churches can't possibly be relevant to all 13 million people in the Il de France region.

The fact that only around 100,000 people out of 13 million people attend church is a good indicator that there is a gap.

We know from conversations with people on the streets of Paris that there are people out there who do not attend church but are willing to try a church that is more targeted toward their generation.

Also, we have no intention of starting an American led French church. Our desire is to help start a church that will be completely led by French people in the coming years.

Paul & Angela Jenkins said...

WOW. I like this post. I bet that is how God feels.

RETTAMAN said...

Interesting post Ken...it makes me think! :-)

ScottMocha said...

Ken, we need to connect... I was lead here today at the perfect time (IMHO.) I am leaving for Paris in 12 days to work with a church there for a year... I would love to talk with you about your experiences, dreams and vision. Please email me.

ScottMocha said...

Oops, you need an emali address (if you could delete this once you have it, I would appreciate it.) scott (at) crazydisciple (dot) com.

Anonymous said...

Ken, just checkin to see if you still check this thing every now and then.

You should really begin blogging again. Great stuff.

Greg