I had a lunch with PJ and we talked about many things. One thing that came up is the lack of or insane among of accountability that bible colleges do or lack. There are two examples of the extreme: one is at Emmanuel. Now I love EBC dearly, but there are some rules set in place that can be reactionary. Like: their stance on drinking is to be smart about it and don't get hammered. Some came from bars out of it, reaction? I think so, like saying "lets push the envelope and do something risky". Other colleges have ridiculous rules that lose them money from dropouts. One person and your down $10,000 + . Discipline is lacking. One or two events that have transpired during my time at EBC comes to mind. I will respectively not mention it, but some know what
I mean. Churches do the same and have such a stance against alcohol depending on the denomination.
Accountability is something that has to be sought after individually, which can be a pitfall. I have had countless accountability partners in my faith and life. When I started it, I thought it was kind of a confession booth, like Catholic churches have. Man was I wrong. What I am getting at here is that schools need to do a better job for preparing Christians for the real world. Some books by Duffy Robbins, Don Miller and Jack Van Impe (okay that last one was a lie) are what preps us. When we get into real life, we're trampled or we trample them. Co-op programs like I am doing are so beneficial because I am allowed to make mistakes now rather than later!!!! haha.. (kidding.. well..kind of). The way I see that is, say I become a youth pastor at a church or a director at an agency and I make dumb mistakes then: I learn too late. Training in co-ops pay off and are such a blessing. We want to go "the bible says so...." when its not relevant to.
The more I think about life, the more I learn things the hard way.
-as a kid: I learn the hard way that the stove and irons are hot.
- As a teen: learn the hard way the harmful and unpleasant effects of alcohol. Hangovers suck
- In ministry: I learn the hard way I dont have all the answers when I WANT to.
- That ministry requires not what the books say: relationships, programs and authenticity but a combination of them. Take the program: see how it;s made relevant to them and build the relationships based on it. Authenticity comes from it all.
- Evangelism is not saying "be saved or else". but a relational process over time that may allow for a lifestyle change.
- I learn the hard way: life is not always peachy in the faith. I feel let down by God at times. Like the past 18 months have been the hardest and worst in my life thus far. There are days I feel like crud, days when my cup is full, half full, empty or shattered. There are days I don;t want to read my bible, but pout and lie in bed. It's life. Psalm 23 says: although we walk in the valley of death, you are with me, I fear no harm (NASB)\
Christian life is always confused with happiness; that we are always Ned Flanders and nothing can rip that ear-to-ear botox induced grin off our faces. If only.
And, something that came out of a discussion: Christians are the only religion where we worry about our salvation. Do lack of good deeds take us to hell? When Jesus says useless branches are cut off, what does he mean? What about salt losing its saltiness? Enlighten me if you will. The go to verse for this would be "I'll never leave or forsake you" (Genesis 28:15) But what if we walk away?
Comment with what you think, I'd love to hear your response