by Living Liminal cross posted from her blog Living Liminal
I came across this Facebook post from Kris Vallotton last week. As of today, it has received over 1,500 responses. And as far as I can see scrolling down the first few hundred, they are all messages of thanks and applause.
But I have spent the last week struggling with it – feeling like I must inhabit an alternate universe. Because when I read this post, I didn’t feel like applauding.
I was distressed!
Before I explain, let me clarify why I am sharing my response. This is not a personal attack on one man. And I do get the idea that he’s encouraging people to work hard for what they want. I have no issue with that at all!
It’s just that I was really disquieted by the first part of his post. It sounded way too much like the toxic celebrity culture that has done so much lasting damage within the ‘church’.
My congregation consisted of about 11 people; 8 of which had Alzheimer’s. When I would a yell a powerful point, (I used to preach with drama), several of them would pee the floor and the nurse would wheel them out.
Bill Johnson taught me that if I prepared as if I was teaching 1000s, someday God would entrust 1000s to me.
So I spent hours every week, reading, studying, and preparing my messages. As I prepared, I would envision myself in stadiums filled with hungry people, all listening to me preaching.
Many times I would preach at the hospital with my eyes closed…I was preaching to a different reality.
“Jesus got them together to settle things down. “You’ve observed how godless rulers throw their weight around,” he said, “and when people get a little power how quickly it goes to their heads. It’s not going to be that way with you. Whoever wants to be great must become a servant. Whoever wants to be first among you must be your slave. That is what the Son of Man has done: He came to serve, not to be served—and then to give away his life in exchange for many who are held hostage.” (Mark 10:42-45)