So I have some good friends from back in NC – Doug & Bonnie. This couple has always been a huge encouragement & help in my life and ministry (more than they will probably ever know). I love hanging out with them cause they both have an extreme love for the Lord, each other, their family & friends, God’s Church, and just life in general.
If you have ever met Doug & Bonnie you also know that they are unique individuals (especially Doug, not sure if there is anyone else like him ha ha ha – may be good may be bad – you can decide) They are exactly who they claim to be and just enjoy life to the fullest. I bring all this up because I started thinking about this idea of “convertible theology” because of Bonnie’s love for driving her convertible. She LOVES that thing, so much so that when she was devastated after wrecking one she found another almost exactly like it – it was great. Doug & I always pick on her cause I fully believe she feels like driving around with the top down can make ANY DAY better. I think she would (and has done so) drive that thing with top down in about any weather. Just to feel the wind blowing through her hair (Doug loves the feeling of the wind chapping his scalp ha ha sorry Doug) and smiling and loving life.
Now as much fun and as great as that mindset is for cars and the enjoyment of life. My fear is that too many of us that claim to be “Christians” and way too many that take up residence in the church live in a detrimental state of “convertible theology” – we feel as though life IS BETTER lived with “top-down” decisions being made for us. Let me explain.
I think there are too many of us out there relying on SOMEONE else to raise us up, challenge us, teach us, change us in our Faith. We try to rely on decisions about morality and what we “should” or “should not” do to be made by someone else and handed down to us. While I believe firmly that God has given some more of an ability to lead and shepherd and guide, I also believe that we are EACH as INDIVIDUALS responsible for being in a close relationship with Him through Jesus, and through that will bring growth and knowledge and a deeper understanding and love of Him. It is time we EACH take it upon ourselves (granted this is best done in community where we interact WITH others and DO LIFE together, but not allowing our growth to HAVE TO ATTEMPT to come from someone else) to experience that growth with God.
I liken this to the political term that seemed to be thrown around a lot during the Reagan years of “Trickle-Down Economics” where financial & economic decisions and plans were put in place at the top and then it eventually trickled down to affect people on lower levels. My fear is that often times we do the same thing in church – we wait for someone else to introduce a “trickle-down spiritual economics”.
Some of this has been brought on also by a recent study through the book of Daniel (our church is doing a series on it during the month of November). I have watched how both King Nebuchadnezzar and King Darius each had moments after doubting the power of the TRUE God and getting people to worship themselves only, to see the one TRUE GOD show up – they then would declare “decrees” for people to only worship this TRUE GOD of Daniel and his fellow friends. (See Daniel 2:46-49; 3:28-30; 4:33-37; 6:25-28 ) Each time though, this “DECREE” (from Top-Down decision making) did not last long and we find another episode of these kings turning away back to their old, power-struggle pride-filled lives. Then something big happens and they return and then make another decree, it was this vicious cycle.
I see this playing out in our lives, so often we just want so bad to have “Christian Leaders” take over our nation. We see battles waging and venomous arguments between Christians over which candidate is a “man or woman of God” and will restore all things to where they need to be. Now please understand that I do feel it is very important for leaders to be Christians, but as much as I feel it is important to understand that everyone has a soul that God loves, and has redeemed through His Son Jesus. God desires that NO ONE SHOULD PERISH. So sometimes I believe we have “bought into” this same “convertible theology” of life being better with the TOP DOWN decisions being made for us in the spiritual realm. When instead I believe that God wants us to help promote the change of this world from the bottom up. I think that is why we see it say in 2 Chronicles 7:14
14 if my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and will heal their land.
It doesn’t say – well if we can ONLY get a Godly King, President, House, Senate, etc then the land will be healed. No I believe it is up to each of us, to start from the bottom up – from getting face-down, humbled, ready to seek HIS FACE, turning from our wicked ways – then God brings the healing.
I think we can look at some of the countries today that are experiencing the greatest movements of God in His church – places like India and China, places that are also experiencing government and leaders that have NO DESIRE for the things of God. These people in these places are not relying on a “convertible theology” to make decisions from the top that will “trickle-down” and allow them to be “better Christ-followers” – they are humbled, broken, sold-out, servants of the MOST HIGH GOD – committed to Him and to His WILL – whatever it takes and whatever may come. It is through that mentality that God is doing a great work and is growing His Church and moving HIs people to do mighty things.
So yeah – maybe riding around in life in a convertible does make your physical day a better one and brings a lil more joy to this life, let me beg you, challenge you, encourage you to not fall into the trap of “CONVERTIBLE THEOLOGY” as we look to live our lives for the ONE TRUE LORD!