It’s been a busy but blessed week in many ways. I appreciate the prayers of my friends, as always.
Yesterday, I gave an update on Aung San Suu Kyi in Myanmar/Burma. Many of the Legacy Institute students are from various ethnic groups from within Burma, and some of those groups are being seriously persecuted by the ruling military junta there. Many times, they have to overcome various obstacles to attend Legacy. Getting a student visa with ever changing rules under conditions where the student is always viewed with suspicion (that they may be going to stay illegally in Thailand, in particular) results in frequent denials. Sometimes, the visas get denied.
So, the thought occurred while praying about SE Asia, “What if none of them could come? What would the school be then? What is a school without its students?”
Of course, members of the Church of God are often denied entry visas (or, in some cases even permission to leave) in order to attend the Feast. What is a holy day if no one shows?
Then, lastly it occurred to me, “What is a church without its members?”
The problem with a top-down government ruled by human beings is that it forgets why it is there. It gets distracted, or worse it gets abused by those who care more about other things.
God the Father and Jesus Christ are not human, though. They rule with righteousness and perfect love. They don’t forget why the church is there.
You can criticize “member surveys”, “participatory government” or “church democracy” all you want, but you cannot say it ignores its membership, at least for long. Looking at the world’s attempts at democracy point to it is when a “democratic” government disenfranchises a huge portion of its constituency, then it is on the road to destruction. Democracies work, and they only work, when full and free participation is encouraged.
Let me leave you with this thought today: If the constituency has God’s Holy Spirit, is being led by God’s Holy Spirit, is honestly seeking God’s will in all things including church matters, then would a “one-man government” even be needed? What would the point be? What would be wrong with seeking counsel from multiple people who will presumably one day be governing the entire universe?
I wonder how many can honestly ask those questions and still say a “one-man rule” is really needed.