Mar 1, 2016

Cigarettes at Church...Why It's a Good Thing

Last week, as I was pulling into church, I noticed a group of men in the parking lot who were lighting up...and I was thankful.

I am thankful to be part of a church where people feel welcome no matter where they are in their spiritual journey.  No matter what addiction, heartbreak, issues or problems they're dealing with...we want them to come.

The church is meant to be a hospital where broken, hurt people come to get help...not a museum where perfect Christians are on display.  I'd rather be part of a church that smells like smoke than a church that smells like moth balls because preserving the past is more important to them than reaching people who need Jesus.

If your church has people entering who smell like smoke...if your church has people entering who are hung over...if your church has people entering who are going through divorce...if your church has people entering who are living together unmarried...if your church has people entering who just got out of jail...if your church has people entering who are struggling with same sex attractions...if your church has people entering who are addicted to drugs...then you've got a church where Jesus is.

The people who smoked...the people who got drunk...the people who were adulterers...the people who were thieves...the people who weren't welcome in the temple...those are the people Jesus spent time with.  He was the friend of sinners.

When people discover they can come as they are, without judgmental stares or condescending attitudes, they can then experience the life-changing grace of God that will transform them from the inside out. 

You have cigarettes at your church?  Praise God!  That's a good thing!