What do you do with God’s favor?

This is a question I’ve been wrestling with lately.

For the most part, I know what to do when life gets tough, when things go awry, when ministry isn’t working the way it should be (or at least you THINK it should be).

I know what to do when it seems God is distant and absent. I know what to do when there is confusion or a lack of clarity.

But honestly, I don’t know what to do when God’s favor and blessing seems to be pouring out in abundance.

I get squeamish. Uncomfortable.

Maybe I’m waiting for it to go bad again. For things to turn towards the worse. For something to be messed up.

It’s as if I can’t simply bask in the favor of God and enjoy it for the moment’s sake. For God’s sake.

If our chief end is to “glorify God, and enjoy Him forever,” am I glorifying God by shrugging off his favor?

What do you do with God’s favor? How do you respond?

Fighting the Invisible Enemy — Programs

We love to fight. We love to draw lines in the sand and choose sides. We love to be for something and against something else.

“I’m missional.”
“Church is only for believers.”
“I’m against big churches.”
“I can’t stand churches who use flashy lights.”
“All youth ministry kids believe in an Moralistic Therapeutic Deistic God.”

And the most popular one as of late?
“I am against programs.”

What the heck does that even mean? To be against programs?

At Luther Seminary, a majority of the youth ministry students in a class I took were just against “programs.” I just read a comment on a fellow-bloggers site that conveyed the idea that programs were somehow the enemy of the church.

Honestly, I seriously don’t get it. I don’t get…
A) What people mean by programs?
B) What they would do instead of programs?
C) Are they doing something else that is working?

In other words, like all the above statements, some Christians love to fight an invisible enemy.

This “program” guy doesn’t really exist. Just like there isn’t a single Christian leader in the world that doesn’t want to be missional in some shape or form. Or a single (honest) Christian leader who doesn’t want to reach more and more people for Christ and thus helping build a “large” church. Or an entire youth ministry of a MTD-believing group of kids.

These are INVISIBLE enemies. Satan loves to get us focusing on things that don’t exist so he can distract us from actually achieving a mission.

What do people probably mean by programs? I’m guessing they are opposed to youth group nights, events, or camps. They are opposed to any sort of organization of a worship night, any sort of media, or creative elements.

In other words — these people are against reaching people for Christ.

Somewhere in their convoluted minds, they believe young people are only reached if God whispers in their ear at night or if we just “hang” out with them in some lonely coffee shop. While I don’t doubt either of those things can happen, it appears to me Christians have been using strategies or “programs” to reach people as long as Christ was alive.

Stop fighting the invisible enemy of programs. Go do something to partner with God in reaching young people.

PS. I realize this is a more emotional post. I feel strongly that we spend so much time being against things that don’t actually exist. However, I also realize by writing how much I despise fighting invisible enemies, I am displaying how I am “against” something. Ah well…