If a tree falls in the forest and no one is there to hear it, does it make a sound?
The same question could be asked of many churches in our area. Sunday after Sunday, week after week, churches all over this country preach from the Word of God to a congregation of “believers.” The message normally falls into one of three categories; salvation (the cross), faith (combating a lack of belief), self help (believe more and you will make it through). Apart from the few in the pew that are new to church life these messages are just a repeat of the same thing that people have heard for years. So where is the impact? If the truth of Jesus is only spoken to other believers does it make an impact?
Let’s take a look at two men in the Bible. Both men were preaching and teaching God’s word to the people. Each had a charge from God to get the people ready for the Christ. One is the prophet Isaiah and the other John the Baptist. Each of these men was charged with preparing God’s people for His return. Isaiah, an Old Testament prophet and a New Testament preacher prepared God’s people for Messiah. Well, isn’t that what the church is waiting for now; the second return of Christ? Perhaps this is what we should be doing now as a church (Isaiah 40:3, Matthew 3, Mark 1, Luke 3:4, John 1:23).
So, brothers and sisters is that what we are doing in the church today, right here in Greeley, CO? It doesn’t take an expert to see that our society is slipping further and further into a spiritual wasteland and a desert of faith, a place where unbelief and sin seem to overtake even the strongest Christian. Therefore our charge should be clear; we must be a voice crying in the wilderness. That wilderness I’m afraid, is in our own backyard. If we just sit amongst fellow believers and bemoan the ills of this world are we nothing more than a tree falling in a forest with no one to hear it?
The Great Commission to go and make disciples must be more than just leading believers back to Christ at the end of each service, but it cannot be less than that. We must go into the uncharted wilderness and teach the truth of God’s words to a lost and dying people (even if that is the people who go to church every Sunday). We must prepare the hearts of our neighbors to receive the Lord. 2 Chronicles 7:14 says that if we will humble ourselves and pray, turning from our sin; the Lord will hear from Heaven and forgive our sins and heal our land.
I am glad to say that there are a few churches and prayer organizations in this area that take this Great Commission to heart. The pastors and leaders of these churches spend hours in prayer daily seeking the heart of God then turn around and speak that truth to anyone with an ear to hear.
Now is not the time to be timid from the pulpit, people must hear the truth of God no matter the cost. They must be taught His ways, by His ministers. People must know what a real relationship with the one true God is. It is no longer good enough to know about Him we must know Him. The sheep must learn to heed the voice of the Good Shepherd.
Pastors, elders, leaders, I extend my hand to you in support. Should the message of the Lord burn on your heart, but you are having trouble overcoming the pressure of peers and this world, feel free to email me (100% confidential) and together we will seek the face of God for strength as you become “A voice crying in Greeley.”
We serve a God that is the author and finisher. We as a church can come together in agreement with God; I believe we will see flowers bloom once again in this wilderness.