Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Let the rock go

David walked along, carrying food for his brothers. He would rather be anywhere but here. The Philistine army had gathered for ward against Israel. The two armies faced each other, camped for battle on opposite sides of a steep valley. A Philistine giant measuring nine feet tall and wearing full army came out each day for forty days, mocking and challenging the Israelites to fight. His name was Goliath. Saul, the King of Israel, and the whole army were terrified of Goliath.

When David arrived, to shorten a long story, he heard Goliath shout at the army of Israel, making fun of them and their God. David, not frightened at all, sans armor, went out and killed the giant with a rock upside the head.

Life sometimes is about slaying Giants, cliched thought that might be.

Change is one of those Giants. Everyone wants change till they begin to get it. Everyone wants change if they are in charge of the change. Everyone wants change till it isn't the change they imagined.

Then someone has to step up and slay that Giant.

Much of the time I'm the one who hands the rock to the Giant slayer. I admit that. Sometimes I relish that. Sometimes I want to take the rock and sling it myself, but I get worried about the outcome of the rock throwing. So, I don't throw it. And Change stands out there and screams at me.

Churches are Giants. Churches who want change but are paralyzed when change they didn't expect happens. I understand. I really, sincerely understand.

Sometimes it is the very change we see in front of us that keeps us from Change. We cringe, we back away, and the rocks never get slung.

It takes a special person, called by God, gifted by God, who makes a difference in the rock-throwing. I believe that. In love, change will happen if someone, many someones actually, are willing to be do their jobs. Someone has to find the rocks. Someone has to make the sling. Someone has to hand the rocks in proper fashion to the rock slinger. And someone, somewhere has to have the courage to let the rock go.

After that, it seems to me, it is in God's hands. If we have done all we've been called to do, then Change will either get the rock in the right spot or not. All we can do is all we can do. All we can do is what we've been gifted to do.

We will suffer setbacks. There are times the analogy will break down (do we really want to kill Change if Change is what we need?). But the overall point is true.

We need to Change what we are doing. Whether that Change comes slowly or quickly is up to many. Ultimately it is our wanting change and getting Change that makes a difference in whether 100s, maybe 1000s of churches survive. Not thrive, survive.

Rocks are ready. Slings are made. Can you pick up the rock and in courage and in faith let it go?