Wednesday, January 13, 2016

If the Church was a Hospital

IF The Church Was a hospital...
A hospital is a place
               ___for recreation
                              ___for buying a house
                                             x__to get well.
A hospital is there for the benefit of
               ___the doctors,
                              ___the nurses    
                                             x__the patient
The most important function of a hospital is
               ___the parking lot
                              ___back rubs from the janitor
                                             x__patient care
The best time to take someone to the hospital is
               ___when your neighbor’s house is for sale
                              ___when your cousin’s car has a flat tire
                                             x__when they are sick
If someone gets run over by a car, the best way to help them is to
               ___tell them how bloody they look
                              ___tell everyone else how badly they are hurt
                                             x__take them to the hospital
If the church was a hospital, who would most likely represent
the hospital?
               ___the patient
                              ___the ushers
                                             x__the unsaved

The word hospitality comes from the same word from which we get hospital. A hospital is obviously a place to get well as marked), and it is for the benefit of the patient. Patient care is a hospital function and the time to get them to the hospital is when sick. They find healing not by hearing how bloody they look or hearing how sick they are but by getting them into hospital care, even emergency care.

Now if the church really was a hospital, there are some things that might be happening, according to the Scriptures: For example: consider thoughtful words  from the two most obvious leaders of the 1st century church, Paul and Peter: Romans 12:10-13 (NCV):
               “Love each other like brothers and sisters. Give each other more honor than you want for                               yourselves.
               “Do not be lazy but work hard, serving the Lord with all your heart.
               “Be joyful because you have hope. Be patient when trouble comes, and pray at all times.
               “Share with God’s people who need help. Bring strangers into your homes. . .” and
I Peter 4:7-10 (NCV):
               “The time is near when all things will end. So think clearly and control yourselves so you will be                                              able to pray.
               “Most importantly, love each other deeply, because love will cause many sins to be forgiven.
               “Open your homes to each other, without complaining. Each of you has received a gift to use to                                         serve others. Be good servants of God’s various gifts of grace.”

When a church is truly functioning as a church, it will become a place where love drives the (church) family to relate through various actions of hospitality. Church members will become channels of grace (grace dispensers of God’s healing grace), and the church will begin ministering more seriously to the sick and suffering of body, soul, and mind,be they in the hospital, at church, at home, or in jail.

Instead of disregarding its healing role, the church will attempt to stay pure not by shooting its fallen and wounded comrades but by launching efforts to restore the fallen while also reaching out to the unreached.

Carl Stagner wrote a wonderful piece in the ChogNews of 11-25-15 describing a fallen California pastor being reconciled with the church where he fell.  I know other places where this story needs to be repeated, where estranged individuals need to be reconciled, where broken and fallen and failed people need healing … if only the church would obediently become the hands and feet of our Lord Jesus Christ, whose Ambassadors God has called us to be.

Paul described his conversion as a time when he no longer viewed other people as the world views them. Instead, he began to view them as God looks at them (sees them) cf 2 Cor. 5:16-21.

Thanks Pastor Paul for the wonderful challenge Sunday using the six questions at the beginning. You certainly challenged me to re-visit this critical question
from a different perspective ...

in Warner’s World,  

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