Some of you have read books by Donald Miller. For example, Blue Like Jazz. Some of you know about the church Donald attends, Imago Dei. Some of you know Imago Dei’s pastor, Rick McKinley. Some of you know Rick has written a book—This Beautiful Mess. Some of you are about to learn that I started reading it this week.
The first 50 pages or so are pretty slow, but it’s picking up now.
Here’s a quote from page 51:
“We [Imago Dei people] realized that if we wanted to live out the kingdom, we would need to get our hearts before God. Only His Spirit can create spiritual desire. As pastor, I couldn’t make anyone in our little group, let alone myself, want the kingdom. We needed God to change us.
One night in the borrowed church, I got up and announced that we would start meeting each Wednesday night to repent and pray for Portland (not the coolest thing to invite your friends to). I printed out lists of every need I could think of in the city. The next Wednesday evening, we sat in a circle and prayed about those things. We had just enough desire to show up, pray, and get honest—and that’s what we told God.
Things got honest real fast. “I hate my neighbor,” one person prayed. “I don’t think I love You, God,” said another. We told God that we wanted to care but didn’t—not really. We told Him we were afraid to follow Him completely because we didn’t want to look like idiots; we didn’t want to risk losing our comforts. Of course, we were confessing realities most of us knew, but we’d been just good enough church folk not to say them aloud.”