Friday, February 13, 2009

What is the task of the church today?

I am having trouble sleeping tonight. I am starting to understand many of my father's sleepless nights when i was a kid. Pastoring can be tough. This Wednesday was a tough one... one of those nights you throw up your hands and ask "why am I doing any of this? Is any of it getting through?" It's not always this way... and I know I have fantastic teenagers.

Anyway, I came across this prayer by a Danish martyr named Kaj Munk. I think his words are very relevant to the church today. Munk was an outspoken priest and playwright who uttered these prophetic words before he was killed, with his bible next to him, by the Gestapo in January 1944 :

"What is, therefore, our task today? Shall I answer: “Faith, hope, and love”? for that sounds beautiful. But instead I would say - courage. No, even that may not be challenging enough to be the whole truth. Our task today is recklessness. For what we Christians lack is not psychology or literature… we lack a holy rage - the recklessness which comes from the knowledge of God and humanity.

The ability to rage when justice lies prostrate on the streets, and when the lie rages across the face of the earth … a holy anger about the things that are wrong in the world.

To rage against the ravaging of God’s earth, and the destruction of God’s world.

To rage when little children must die of hunger, when the tables of the rich are sagging with food.

To rage at the senseless killing of so many, and against the madness of militaries.

To rage at the lie that calls the treat of death and the strategy of destruction peace.

To rage against complacency.

To restlessly seek that recklessness that will challenge and seek to change human history until it conforms to the norms of the Kingdom of God.

And remember the signs of the Christian Church have been the Lion, the Lamb, the Dove, and the Fish … but never the chameleon. Never the chameleon..."

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