Excuses I’ll No Longer Accept

If you feel like the Adventist church is stuck in neutral, or reverse, but can’t figure out why, let me shed some light on the subject for you. If you have questions like:

Why isn’t the church reaching it’s full potential?

What could be different, better or improved?

Why are all these bad things happening in the church?

Why… STOP! You’re not allowed to ask any important questions.

Uh, Adventists… the truth will never mind. And have you never read James 1:5? It’s all about asking.

So no more excuses (see below). No more fear and guilt. I’m going to seek the truth. I’m going to mine it. And you can’t stop me.

This article exposes the excuses many (prominent) Adventists love to make when they want to kill an idea they are uncomfortable with or that simply doesn’t suit them personally, like doing something—anything—differently.

 Excuse #1: Money is coming in. That’s a sure sign of God’s blessing.

The Adventist empire is pretty stinking big. Impressively so? If money and the things it can buy and build and beget is indeed the measure of God’s blessing, the Adventist church is thriving.

Adventist ministries (and “ministries”) receive funds. Colleges receive funds. Adventist hospitals count their funds in the billions of dollars.

But money is, in reality, no meter of God’s blessing. The pornography industry is beyond prosperous. Is it blessed by God? What about the tobacco and gambling industries?

What about the church… industry?

Remember when Jesus told the rich young ruler to give away his wealth and then come follow Him?

I have nothing against using money for God’s cause. Money can be incredibly useful. I just don’t view it as in indicator beacon.

 Excuse #2: It’s a waste of time to talk about issues facing the church when we could and should just get on with “our mission.” Right? Talking about things I don’t personally deem important is a worthless distraction…

Is it a waste of time for a soldier who is bleeding out to stop and get medical attention? If he were to attempt to continue his mission in his injured state, he might die. And that’s not useful to the cause he’s fighting for. Only a delusional person, or a person who had something to gain, would even want to continue on in such bad shape.

Taking the time to fix a race car after it has crashed will help it cross the finish line faster than getting out to push a scrap heap.

In this light continuing on as is, injured, or crashed, is in fact a worthless distraction.

 Excuse #3: The church is run by people and people make mistakes.

If that’s the case, why not sanction all pastors to be rapists? I mean, where’s the line for whether a mistake matters? And who draws it?

I draw it. And you draw it. We draw it when it makes us uncomfortable.

And let me tell you: I’m very uncomfortable with the type and amount of mistakes being made by “leaders” of the Adventist organization.

 Excuse #4: Uh, not everyone in the church is bad. There ARE some really good people working for the church. Right?

I agree. There ARE some really good people working for the church. But what kind of product are they putting out there? Does it justify the cost? Could it be more efficient? More productive?

Would you buy a new car you knew to be a lemon just because there were some really good people working in the manufacturing plant? No. You’d say, “What’s the best car I can get for the money?” The investment is too big and too important to make for the wrong reason. You rely on a car to help you get from one place to another. The manufacturer can’t just advertise that it’s a car. It has to work and it has to be better than other cars on the road for people to buy it. It can’t just be theoretically useful, it must be usable in reality.

Only in this case we’re not just talking about a car. We’re talking about a denomination that claims to be on a serious mission from God. It can’t just advertise that it’s a denomination on a mission. It can’t just be theoretically useful, it must be usable in reality. The stakes are too big. This is one investment we can’t afford to get wrong because people literally need a church that can help them get from one place to another, if you know what I mean.

 Excuse #5: But sometimes the church system DOES do things right. Right?

Have you ever been on a treadmill when the power goes out? You’re lucky if you don’t go flying when it stops right in the middle of a workout. Would you buy a treadmill if it only worked 50% of the time? When every other step might send you flying? Of course you wouldn’t. Treadmills are supposed to be good for you. And they are… when they work.

This is for God. Anything less than the very best we can give is not good enough. Plain and simple. We won’t ever reach perfection this side of Heaven, but why shouldn’t we get as close as we can? On a scale of 1 to 100, there’s a lot of room between the two ends. 2, 30 and 99 are all less than 100, but 99 is much closer than 2 or 30.

If the church were a secular business, I’d gladly lower my expectations. But it’s not a secular business. Is it? Is it??

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