So in 25 years of pastoral ministry I can sure relate to this chapter. It was funny and as I read his experiences I mentally recalled some of mine that are so similar. I like the one where someone says his message was awful and then the next person tells Peter how deeply the message moved the heart of God (p.45). He writes about those in the body of Christ that get critical, spiritually arrogant, and feel it is there job to critique and rebuke the pastors of he church and some of it’s members. He teaches that we must confront and that to truly confront someone we must have a huge deposit of love in the church and their lives. I know when I am confronted by newer guests at the church or even long-time members that rarely attend gatherings, events, or small groups, I immediately guard my heart, as their motive is most likely to judge, or just punch me in the gut on the way out. This goes for nasty emails or facebook messages. I must be honest though, I don’t get many at all. Maybe one or two a year.
When we truly are involved in each other’s lives, and love is great, we can have truly high standards and loving accountability (p. 47). We must make money deposits of care and love into each other’s lives. Our goal cannot be just to proclaim truth but to influence people and lead them to be more Christ-like, with true love, care, and relationships (p. 53).
“Christianity is not a message, it’s a lifestyle. It’s caught, not taught.” P. 53
“People who preach truth outside the context of loving community are like child abusers wo try shoving the steak of God’s Word down a baby’s throat.” (p. 54).
Love, God, Love People, and Serve the World. That is our target at Compelled and the second mission cannot be over looked by “lazy love” as Peter calls it. We must continue to love each other unconditionally. Even when we are hurt. Even when we don’t get our own way. Even when we think others are wrong. We must love, there is no other path but this path of Christ. The law of love! Great chapter! Thanks Peter Haas.