It’s like fingernails on a chalkboard to me when someone says that the church is a business. That’s like saying a snake is a broom, a skunk is a kitty cat or a pastor is a CEO. I apologize for this confusion because most of us have aspired at some point to emulate “success in the pastorate” which has wound up looking a lot like the pastor as CEO. I also want to ask God to forgive me for this self-centered “strain”.
The reason that this question is critical to me at this point in my life is that I see myself at a crossroads. The church can be “like” many things but in essence it can only “be” one thing. I don’t care what the church is “iike” – I care what it “is” and that we have guidance and direction and focus that reflects our “essence”, not what we may remotely resemble. If we are like a business maybe I’ll keep my “like-a-job”. If we are a business then I think I’ve lost my calling. If you find it let me know.

While I cringe at the comparison of the church to a business, I accept the fact that there is an organizational side to the church as well as the “organism”, which is the essence of the church. Organization is necessary, I think . . . , in order to be as effective as we can. But it must always enhance the living essence of the church, not control or limit it. It seems to me that we “organize” to follow a movement of God not to create it. Any structure that we pro-create with the presumption that God must fit into our plans, will be disappointing.

They were told to “wait” in the upper room for a power that would come from “on high”. Their difficulty manifested in the “election” of Matthias to replace Judas. Organizational tedium at it’s best . . . so far as we can tell, the only consequence of this action was the action itself.

But who in their organizational acumen would ever have scripted Acts 2? What creative mind would ever have seen that event? The supernatural presence of God Almighty . . . miraculous signs . . . and several thousand people being truly added to the pewless church. And then somewhere following, in the aftermath of a humanly unmanageable movement of God, organization finds it’s niche in seven men “known to be full of the Holy Spirit and wisdom”, who are recruited to “wait on tables”. The apostles realized by now that their “work” and it is “work”, was the ministry of the word and prayer. (Acts 6)

What do I want? I want with all my heart to be in the middle of a movement of God that is so much of God that we would be unable to make a seminar out of it. If Acts 2 happened today, the DVD’s and the workbooks would be available within a month and God would become a sideshow to leadership.