There are a lot of things nowadays that separate us from what we should be attached to. We seem to detach ourselves from any kind of responsibility and justify it (of course) in our heads like the same outcome is still happening.
For instance, we no longer really need to study deep into the Scriptures ourselves anymore, because that is our ‘teachers’ job. Churches all over the place have poured money into a teaching pastor, which in my opinion is great if you can afford it. Most churches simply just depend on the senior pastor to put together a message along with everything else they are doing that week. The downside is that the congregation is more at risk to be lazy and simply expect the teaching pastor to do all the hard work. Many of us now want to go to church to get fed from this pastor and subconsciously we begin to rely on the pastor for teaching instead of our own study or our surrounding community. We then have congregations that are the result of one man’s theology instead of a community working it out together.
We’ve separated ourselves from studying the Scriptures.
Another example that I’ve noticed is how we deal with the poor. Shane Claiborne in his book The Irresistible Revolution points this out, and I don’t have the book in front of me so the quote will be off a bit. Essentially though what he said was
I’m convinced that when we see Jesus he won’t say “I was hungry and you gave money to the United Way and the United Way fed me” or “I was naked and you gave your old clothing to the Salvation Army and they clothed me.”
As you can see, we’ve put a wedge between us and the poor. How many of us actually are in constant contact with the poor. Something that Jesus obviously assumed we would have when he said the poor would always be with us. Now we pay organizations and ministries to do our work for us. We don’t even have to feed the poor or clothe them anymore, we just pay money and get out of the job.
We’ve separated ourselves from loving the poor.
The list goes on. We refuse to take responsibility. We refuse to get our hands dirty. We refuse to believe that we have even done this. We want to think the poor is more than an afterthought that we throw money at, we want to think that studying the Scriptures is more important to us than simply just showing up on Sunday morning. But is it?