Wake Up, Church

By | 9:00 AM 8 comments
A few Sundays ago I was taking my three littles to their classes before the service started and I noticed another mom having a hard time with her little boy. Hard time...as in...he was running away from her. And this Mom, due to a physical handicap, could not run after him. I just sort of watched him come down the hallway and thought for sure he would stop before he got to me.


He whizzes on by through the double doors. Which lead to a ramp and more doors and then the parking lot. And now I am thinking that I better do something. And then I am doing something. I yell to a teacher on the hallway to watch my kiddo's and take after this little boy.

At first I am just kind of trotting so that I don't look too stupid. Then I realize that he has made it down the ramp and through the doors into the parking lot. And I better step it up a bit. And then I realize that he is in the parking lot and running full force to the busy road. And then I am all out running. All out. Lose a flip flop in the process all out.

I see another couple calmly walking into another entrance ahead of me and yell at them "Help me stop him!"

And they walk on into the church.

And I catch the little boy. Who is surprisingly calm after I practically body slam him into the concrete in order to stop him. And takes my hand and walks complacently back into church to his mom and to his class.

To this day I am not sure why that couple didn't stop and help me. Is it because the boy I was chasing was black and about Eli's age and they just assumed it was my kid? (Which by the way is the most nauseating of the excuses to me.) Is it because they didn't understand english and the words "help me stop him!"? Is it because they were out of shape and figured I'd have a better chance of catching him anyway? Is it because they didn't want to get involved? Is it because they were so excited to get to their sunday school donut that saving a kids life paled in comparison?

Ok. Yes. I admit I was a bit angry at their reaction. And the other people in the parking lot who just watched me run after this boy and did nothing to help. But I can't help but draw a parallel between that whole experience and church in general.

And teens.
And adults are running for the street.
Running to their death apart from Christ.

(If you don't believe me...check out these statistics. Or these. Or these. Or these.)

And by church, let me be clear that I am not picking on my church...but the BIG church in general. Made up by a large chunk of the population who call themselves Christian. Who are more preoccupied with their Sunday donut than in seeing the child rushing toward the busy street.

And let me be even clearer...I am not tooting my horn here. I need to wake up too. I just happened (for once) to be in the right place at the right time and be in good enough shape to do something about the situation.

You might look stupid.
People will stare.
You might feel alone.
You will probably lose a shoe.


You will have (been a part of) SAVING A LIFE.

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Tasha Via said...

Great post Jenn! All too true...

Stacey said...

OK! Here here on the "ugh" and crying... Yeah. I hear ya.

And here's another take. No offense to the mother you speak of but I see this as the church as well. The church has been handicap in many ways and I believe God is restoring the "man with the withered hand". Our reach has not been what it should be.

Thanks for this post today. Beautiful.

very well said. thanks for being real and honest!

julie said...

what a great post Thank you

A wonderful post today Jenn. We all need a heart like His. I love you sweetie.

Mark Dolejs said...

I have heard of this happening several times, as we have several "runners" whom we are lucky enough to have the chance to work and worship with. I am guilty of standing by and watching. It should be second nature to all of us, especially those of us who have kids, that a kid running by themselves can not be a good thing, especially when there isn't a parent close behind. Having recently worked some with the children in Alyssa's Friends, I now understand much better about the "runners". I think the casual observer might think most kids have enough sense to stop and not put themselves in danger (although this is probably giving people more credit than they are due). I think you hit the nail on the head with this post!!! Thank you for sharing!

Susan said...

Well, I was going to ask if I was a person walking by who didn't notice, but then I realized I wasn't there Sunday (home with sick ones). LOL! Honestly, some times things are super hectic around the God's World area (which is why we need more volunteers to help on that hall), and I can see this happening, and the couple you yelled to may have thought you were yelling to someone else. When I leave from working on that hall at 10, I am often exhausted. Those kids keep me busy, and when I leave, I feel I am in a daze. Back to the ones who seemed to not notice...I really could be one of those on any given day. Between my three kids, who often want to speak to me all at once, I sometimes walk along trying to process what has just been stated or asked by my precious ones, and I think I totally miss what is going on around me. (Kind of like driving somewhere and after you get there, you wonder how you got there.) I realize sometimes that I walk by people without saying hello (unintentionally), and then I find myself yelling down the hall, "Hey so and so..." or maybe later I will catch up with them and apologize for passing by and not speaking. The same has happened to me, too, though. I have spoken to some at our church loud and clear, who look right at me, but do not speak. I assume they are preoccupied, because I know that for the most part, our church is full of loving people who really do care about all of God's people and want to help. But you're right, we should all try to be more aware of our surroundings and do our best to acknowledge others. Our greeting, smile, or answer to a "help" call could mean all the difference in someone's day.

a friend once told me...
"God does not call the equipped, he equips the called."