Should the church imitate the ways of the world
when Christ should be our only imitation,
as we attend various seminars and conferences
to learn the latest man-made recommendations
about the best ways to increase our numbers,
how to grow attendance and effectively manage it,
following marketing formulas and business models
in lieu of the leading of the Holy Spirit?
Big buildings and gymnasiums
seem to please us,
but fishing boats and hillside grass
were good enough for Jesus.
Worship teams and soundboards,
every kind of instrument,
projectors, screens, and software –
all the best AV equipment.
Though in a jail cell, with no accompaniment,
Paul and Silas sang and prayed,
and as the earth shook and shackles broke,
a guard and his family were saved.
The powers that be issue edicts of caution:
your worship might be an offense;
don’t sing too loud, don’t dance or prophesy!
Carnal guests might not want to attend!
And what once was so powerfully anointed,
soon becomes a man-orchestrated show,
as the Holy Spirit, quenched and greatly grieved,
at the expense of men’s plans, is ignored.
We need not follow the recommendations of men
or the methods of the world,
if we have the mind of Christ, the leading of the Holy Spirit,
and the Truth of the Living Word.