The Church Is Not Walmart

Pastor Francis Chan tells of a random churchgoer who said to him, “I really didn’t like worship today.” His response was, “That’s ok; we weren’t worshiping you.”

What God is doing takes priority over our personal preferences.

monkimage.phpThink about that for a minute. Do God’s priorities take first place in your life? We push God to the side when we focus on our personal preferences instead of biblical precedents. Now, we all have our personal preferences, and there’s nothing wrong with that. But when our preferences start to outpace what God is doing, we become selfish, self-centered, and self-destructive. We are great at finding all kinds of things to disagree about when we don’t get what we want.

On January 20, 1961, John F. Kennedy said, “Ask not what your country can do for you – ask what you can do for your country.” In churches of any size, there will be a lot of preferences. We shouldn’t be asking what our Church can do for us, but what we can do through our Church. What God is doing, and what he is calling us to do, takes priority over our preferences. He takes priority simply because of who He is.

bible“Great is the Lord, and greatly to be praised, and His greatness is unsearchable. One generation shall commend Your works to another, and shall declare Your mighty acts.” Psalm 145:3-4

Notice the words COMMEND and DECLARE. Spurgeon said, “Let us see to it that we praise God before our children, and never make them think that His service is an unhappy one.” David said parents would declare God’s great acts to their children. Spurgeon said, “Worship should be somewhat like its object—great praise for a great God.” He also said there is “no chorus is too loud, no orchestra too large, no Psalm too lofty for the lauding of the Lord of Hosts.”

90The church is not Walmart. Today, I want to put you on notice. God’s Church is not going to be driven by consumer Christianity! When you go to Wal-Mart, you are a consumer and you can pick and choose what you want. When you engage with the Church, you are a servant of the most high God! What God is doing takes priority over your preferences. Consumer mentality is destroying authentic Christianity in our churches. The Church does not exist to be popular, we exist to be on point with what God is doing. The stakes are too high. Too many marriages are falling apart. Too many people are dying and going to hell. It’s time to get to work!

What God is doing takes priority over our personal preferences. 

7 thoughts on “The Church Is Not Walmart

  1. “I really didn’t like worship today.” His response was, “That’s ok; we weren’t worshiping you.”
    Clearly our “Church attender” was a hear’er of the word not a doer of the word. What Kennedy said and what Jesus said. “I came not to be served, but to serve.”

  2. Worship is not to be valued by what is going on with me and the rest of the worshipers in the room. It’s value is in my personal relationship with, my response to and the exaltation of God. He is the object of my worship, not me!

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  4. I have always felt that when you leave church, you should feel a little uncomfortable. That you should realize there is so much more for you to do. The more uncomfortable, the more I probably needed to here it.

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  6. Pastor Stephen, I really appreciate your writings and especially this one about Wal-Mart Christianity. Thanks for your faithfulness in taking the time and and energy to put this blog out. May our Lord bless you and your ministry in a mighty way!

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