Monday, September 25, 2017

Green Eggs and Ham and the Great I AM by Eileen Knowles

"There’s massive tension in overseeing a “come and see” ministry in a “go and tell” church." Danny Franks

“Come and see” is actually a training ground for missionaries who “go and tell.” Connect the here to there, and you might find that those still out there will show up in here." Danny Franks

I read the above thoughts recently in an article called "Here" Must Connect to "There" by Danny Franks.

Over the last few days I've been thinking about this tension between here and there. It's a good tension to have.

Of course we want to encourage folks to come and see. Of course we want the guests who walk down our sidewalks and through the doors of Rock Bridge to have a good experience. But, that's certainly not the end goal for "being" the church.

Going and telling should be our heart. We should be moving towards living out the message of Jesus in our lives every day, in every way, and at every opportunity.  Our words and our actions out there have the potential to leave a bigger impact for the Kingdom of God than what we do in here on a Sunday morning.

I love how the author of the article refers to here as training ground. Those being trained and equipped here must also feel compelled to get up and go out there... to the battlefield.

All these here and there thoughts I've been having lately made me think of the children's book Green Eggs and Ham.  Yesterday morning, before church, I went down to our basement and dug this old classic out of a box.  I've held onto a few books my son enjoyed when he was younger so he can eventually pass them down to his kids.

Here's the crazy thought I had as I reread the exchanges between Sam-I-am, the character who was crazy about green eggs and ham, and the unnamed character in the book that wanted nothing to do with green eggs and ham. Sam-I-am was a disciple maker...not for Jesus but for green eggs and ham.

Sam-I-am was on fire for green eggs and ham. He enjoyed them so much that his heart was for this other character in the story to experience, to taste and see, their goodness too  Okay, so maybe Sam-I-am had a thing or two he needed to learn about discipleship etiquette. His approach certainly lacked subtlety and gentleness... but his heart was definitely in the right place.

Things Sam-I-am got right:
  • Sam-I-am didn't keep the good news of green eggs and ham all to himself. He connected the here to the there.
  • Sam-I-am positioned himself in this other character's life.
  • Sam-I-am engaged this man in conversation at every opportunity he got.
  • Sam-I-am never gave up on this man or in the hope that one day this individual would taste and see for himself the goodness of green eggs and ham.
And, we all know the wonderful ending to this story. The man Sam-I-am had been "doing life with" eventually becomes a believer in green eggs and ham too!

"Say! I like green eggs and ham!
I do! I like them, Sam-I-am!
And I would eat them in a boat.
And I would eat them with a goat...
And I will eat them in the rain.
And in the dark. And on a train.
And in a car. And in a tree.
They are so good, so good, you see!
So I will eat them in a box.
And I will eat them with a fox.
And I will eat them in a house.
And I will eat them with a mouse.
And I will eat them here and there.
Say! I will eat them anywhere!
I do so like
green eggs and ham!
Thank you!
Thank you, Sam-I-am!"
--  Green Eggs and Ham by Dr Seuss

"Taste and see that the Lord is good.
How happy is the man who takes refuge in Him! " Psalm 34:8

"I will praise you, Lord, with all my heart;
I will tell of all the marvelous things you have done.
 I will be filled with joy because of you.
 I will sing praises to your name, O Most High." Psalm 9: 1-2


Post a Comment