This is a very serious post. I didn't really mean for it to be, but it just happened. This has been on my heart now for what feels like an eternity, and I finally manged to write some of what I felt down. This isn't all that I feel though, but this was as concise as I could be for the time being. Just bear with me as I go solemn.
Just an aside after my first aside: but, I am posting this at work. Hopefully I do not get fired.
Now as we all know, Pentecostals, because they cannot wear jewelry or other fun things like colored nail polish, tend to go overboard on ordinary things like clothes and shoes. It explains why men have cutesy little bowties made out of floral designs and women have mounds of ruffles on their shirts, jackets, skirts, and purses.
I don’t really understand the ruffle. In my opinion, it causes one to look like King Louis XVI or his wife, Marie Antoinette. This, in and of itself, is disturbing because that bunch of royalty were known for their ridiculous extravagances and tendencies to ignore the little people of France. “Let them eat cake!” Marie Antoinette famously cried. Meaning that she was completely ambivalent about the people of France who were currently starving and wearing rags. The people have no bread? Let them eat cake.
This reminds me of today. Today is all about the “saved” generations staying saved and in their finery. “Let them stay lost!” we cry. Because in all honesty, who wants to take time to dirty their hands and win a soul? Who wants to take time to reach out to the community around them? No one. That would require us to step out of our ruffles. It would require us to look beyond our insipid, fleetingly attractive appearances and delve into a matter that is greater than ourselves. Basically, it would require us to stop playing dress up.
See, this is where I have such a problem with Pentecostals. We sing about “giving ourselves away so He can use us” (just a side note, but the lyrics of that song beg to be misinterpreted) or “coming back to the heart of worship, where it’s all about Him”, but have we really done that? Have we stepped outside our Pentecostal boxes?
Youth Congress of 2009 was about “Going Beyond the Normal” or some such inspirational nonsense. But when I went, I saw nothing but repetitions of the same vanities. I saw nothing that actually went beyond any kind of normal, except for the odd explorations into large flowers, ugly bowties, and skinny jeans.
I don’t really have a point to make here, except that if we cannot learn to cast aside our “ruffles” and throw ourselves, heart and soul, into what really matters, then the Revival that God has promised us will never happen. And we will sit in our pretty churches with our pretty appearances and die on the inside.
I want to do more than just make it to heaven. I want to win a soul. I want to do something for the Kingdom of God – more than ever, I want to be so consumed with doing the the will of God that I get to the point where nothing else matters. I don’t want to be worried about the number of ruffles on my skirt or if my shoes match my purse. Those mindless trivialities are not for the children of God and they are most certainly not for the unsaved world that has no idea about the love and purpose of Christ.
This post started off about ruffles and how ridiculous they are. In reality, a ruffle is just a ruffle. In the larger sense, however, it stands as a symbol of a much bigger outward problem. My question to you today is this: what will you do? What will you do as you sit here and read what I have to say? Will you go to another youth service? Will you seclude yourself into the four walls of your church and NEVER, EVER allow yourself to reach a lost world? Or will you move? Will you shake off the stupidity that we have cloaked ourselves with, forget about our failing attempts to keep up with the world, and then go after what really matters? Like maybe someone who needs God? Someone who needs a helping hand, a caring heart?
This is the generation that will carry us into the future. We have everything before us. The tools to reach out are literally within our grasp. So, I ask you. Where do you go from here?