Chris Webb – Poets In Autumn Tour

my friend told me that Jesus was one of three things a joke in popular culture a sign that you're still a slave if you're black a ploy politicians used to make sure gays can't get married she told me the church was led by men who don't take the advice they give others each Sunday and that she saw so many shepherds who were more lost than their flocks that she would never be a sheep again she says she tried hard once believing she could find the answers to the universe's questions in a sanctuary she sat hungry for a dish heavier than some get you through the week inspirational quotes she needed answers but found blank chalkboards of broken Bible verses she started thinking religion was more destructive than helpful to her Christ just became a metaphor of good decision-making you take what you want from his stories but you don't believe his power will last to her Jesus was a carpenter that built stuff from Ikea it wasn't as strong as advertised he would buckle if she rested on him couple that with bad stories from pulpits and confusion about Christian origins her doubt grew and sin started to justify as human nature until she thought of church and therefore God as something that she should educate herself beyond now she speaks of karma and the universe as if they're sacred as if the destination of her soul depends on vibes that are good and as if God is a puzzle that every religion only has a piece of because she couldn't see his wholeness in the faith that she grew up in and I feel some type of way cuz her story represents a generation more skeptical and critical than ever and God with his arm stretched toward them I imagine him scanning the minds of millions who think he's one option among many and I wonder if his thoughts down Heaven's hallways like boats of light like the belly of a crying mother packed with love and sorrow anger and heartbreak I wonder if he hears 2017 confused his name with energy when he orders energy to initiate what if what if the strength and power he used to shape the universe is the same strength he's using now to hold himself back from destroying it I wonder how strong his hands are gripping his last threads of patience like we do concert tickets sending signs to souls that were few sign language waiting for hearts to turn to and not away from him why is God slapped boxing with America's disillusionment why are people so turned off is it science New Age suffering politics is black awakening defeat enlightenment history faith sin race pass red up white blue down is it them or or is it me us the very churches that they've tried and never met him at I don't want to voice what I have to say next but I love the church and I think we need to look at ourselves because if we are his image bearers have we done our best to give our world a clearer image of who Jesus is let me rephrase that what if people are searching for God's likeness elsewhere because many of our saints refuse to reflect God's likeness in their lives what if we started this problem what if my friends feel the need to find separate tracks of faith because of our churches that have barely been untracked what if this is on us and worse than that what if our false Gospels like prosperity super condemnation and super grace are more dangerous than just half-truths what if they cause more confusion and what if I could trace back the godless beliefs of my friends to the very sanctuaries where these godless Gospels are practiced let's try the prosperity gospel a fortune Christianity it only tells you good things about yourself to keep you coming back to a restaurant of GMOs God missing outreach a vending machine a vending machine Jesus that spits out blessings if you put dollars in what if my friends who swear by karma put out good energy now because the only heard sermons preached about God's energy being focused on their good days our bank statements our seasons and not our souls no wonder why when the bodies of sharp black kids hit newspapers it makes folks lose their faith if we only know God as giver of increase and not as anchor and suffering will drift when our seed offerings come back boy if we cite the early church apostles and Jesus as examples of success and failed to mention that most of them were killed when death knocks on the door of our people they'll push prosperity to the fire not knowing that there's a greater God beyond it next up super condemnation the burden heavy love absent judgment filled faith system that brings more fear than God to men robbing hearts of the opportunity to be a new creation by judging the struggles in their process if we make our churches unsafe places where people can't realistically share with their at then they'll see the world as a more forgiving place than God's side and and I think that's what happened a judgment-free culture that came out of churches it turned scriptures to oppressive powers manipulating spiritual things to control men out of fear but our lives are not a game of hide and seek with God out to get man instead the gospel is God's rescue mission behind enemy lines to seek and destroy the sin that keeps us separated but if we choose to portray God as if he somehow gets pleasure from payback we make hell sound petty and diminish the lives God traveled to save us from it every Westborough mindset that singles out certain sins it makes it seem like that's all God's hidden drugs don't make me sick worst off it fails to mention that God is focused on saving as possible healing them of more than just the sins that match your prejudice Christ came for every break and every tear in humankind he's here to fix our frames holistically not just in the rips that make you uncomfortable lastly super grace the super relatable nobody's perfect relax and enjoy religionists as comfortable as coffins with coffee bars the incorrect answer to super condemnation with god is friend and not lord help and not holy we're relationship with christ is portrayed as a nation and photoshoot party and your only requirement for salvation is to dress nice where the focus is unrelated bility and not commitment sin is brush past for the sake of numbers i don't know which one is worse the absence of love from condemnation heavy mindsets or the fake love that's scared to hurt feelings with truth in our quest to show that our ministries don't hate we have to know that we will offend we will cause anger and if we're doing it right then we will be rejected like jesus the gospel is beautifully offensive and when I became a Christian I signed up to be hated the problem recently is that we have not been despised for the right reasons and I don't know maybe my hypothesis is off but what I'm getting at is this people say that the church has lost its impact on the world but that is not true the church will always impact the world but it is up to us to determine whether that impact is beautiful or deadly because if we could lead men to Christ then I imagine we can lead them away and I wonder how many have been swept away by my hypocrisy because this church that I've been critiquing it's me pridefully putting God into a box to match my preferences using faith as a means to push my personal self-centered and political agenda what if they see the hypocrisy I'm blind – we have been black lights because as we've shined our lives they've seen our stains – and no saint will ever have a perfect understanding of God's light we will all fail in understanding just like we fell in faith but these words are not a car to be faked or to put on an act but to try fight to represent him well push him past all the other things that have nothing to do with them that way if somebody chooses against Christ at least they'll know who they're turning from as we found our lives have seen our stains – so let's also let them see us acknowledge our need for the same God that we preach and cling to the side of Christ which is the only place where their stains and ours could be made clean [Applause]

9 thoughts on “Chris Webb – Poets In Autumn Tour

  1. Fantastic brother! Good to see other poets speaking truth unapologetically and taking ownership of faith!

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