Dear Salvation Army, Too Much Rhetoric Not Enough Practice??

You don’t have to be in a political office in order to view politics…it’s everywhere including the church.
Church/corps splits have happened because of truly silly things – “the color of the carpet in the sanctuary”…really??

I’m feeling a little feisty today, so please bear with me.
army
Rhetoric…and Holiness???
The Salvation Army struggles with too much rhetoric and not enough practice sometimes.
What do I mean by this?
We (like any church) are so good at saying all of the right things.
We (like any church) are so good at wearing all the right clothes…ahem the uniform.
We (like any church) are so good at touting our scripture verses and doctrines…but can it become more about outward appearances like when the DC, TC or General comes to visit than about personal/corporate holiness?

Sometimes I feel as if we are very good at polishing the outside of the cup while we just keep neglecting to do the hard stuff like cleaning the inside of the cup (our hearts).  We try and try to impress the “brass” with our efforts and works but are we truly living consistently?  This isn’t some sort of witch-hunt today.  I’m not pointing the finger at anymore more than I am pointing fingers. back. at. myself.

This is Personal…
This is truly personal.
if this resounds with anyone else, then great!
Let’s do something about this together.
I honestly know that I am not the only one who struggles with this.
We are so good at singing ‘the Founder’s Song’ in Holiness meeting and thirty minutes later we’re at our favorite “Sunday Lunch Spot” complaining about the wait time, the server, we barely give a tip and then we complain on our way home about the traffic and some ignorant sap who just cut us off…do you get what I’m saying?

This is Deadly…blood
I, for one, do not want to be a member of the Salvation Army in Laodicea, if you get what I mean (Revelations 3:14-22).
If I’m honest, I’d rather rip off this uniform and walk away from it all before I start striving to become a pew warmer and a luke-warm one at that.  The church of Laodicea, according to Revelation, didn’t get their act together.  They didn’t have the passion to serve Christ as His bride.  They weren’t on fire for Him, instead they were barely tepid in their faith.  Sometimes I feel that in our Army we walk a fine line too.  We can utter all of the “catch-phrases” of our Army like “Fire a volley” and “Hallelujah”  but on the inside we’re so caught up in the bickering and pettiness that are missing out on the fire of the Holy Spirit.  I don’t think we need another Pentecost, it’s already here we are just so caught up in our own issues that we can’t see it…that’s just how I see it…I hope I’m wrong.  When did we desire to be a mediocre Army?  When did we sign up to warm a pew but as soon as the hard work comes we’re suddenly absent?  If we are truly “witnesses for Jesus” why aren’t we more visible with this message in the streets?  We cannot hole ourselves up in beautiful Halls of worship and expect the brokeness of neighborhoods to be mended by how well we sing and play an instrument.  We’ve got to get on with it!  We’ve got to either catch fire and be moved by the Holy Spirit or we need to get out of the way and stop hampering the Spirit and the potential growth of other Soldiers.  Either warm up or be spit out.

shielfThis is real…
I have felt this sting of conviction.
I don’t write this as a “guilt trip” for anyone before it strikes my heart and brings ME up short first.
We need to stop “playing” army and be army.
We need to stop fighting amongst each other and fight the real war for the souls of those who are lost.
We need to stop spouting half-empty words of rhetoric when our hearts aren’t in it and instead fall upon our faces and recommit ALL OF WHO WE ARE to Christ once more.
We do not need pew warmers and more apathetic bodies in uniforms, instead we need leaders who are servant who will serve and love regardless of where someone came from or what their last name might be.
We don’t have time to play “church politics”…this gets in the way and stunts our growth as a corporate body of holiness.

It’s “Put up” or “Shut-Up” time.
I have seen the walking dead amongst soldiers and officers.
I have seen the passion-less works of apathetic hearts.
I have witnessed the “going through the motions” without a resemblance of the practice of holiness.
We have a choice.
We can either put up or shut up.
We can either live lives worthy of this calling upon our lives, or we can stop pretending and get out of the way.
This is a wake up call.
This is a call to holiness.
This is a reminder that there is more to it than donning on the uniform and spouting all the right words.

How is your heart today?
How is your spiritual journey?
This is something more for our Army to ponder today.
To God be the glory!

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2 Replies to “Dear Salvation Army, Too Much Rhetoric Not Enough Practice??”

  1. I do not know who wrote this article but they are right on target. I would to add we have begun to sing the “Funeral March” All Salvationists and Officers should read this article..

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