I have a confession to make. I am always dangerously close to becoming an insider. I love God and his church and I want to protect and care for it. Sometimes I have done stupid things thinking I was accomplishing that task. What it comes down to is I am seeking security.
The insider is probably one of the most insecure of the seekers we have discussed. They don’t feel safe without control. When someone comes in who is different or tries to change the status quo they see it as an attack on what they have found to be true. That makes it deeply personal.
There seems to be only to choices to the insider when this occurs. Stand in defiance to the forces that want to destroy all that the insider has come to believe or move on to another fortress where they can better secure themselves.
As a church planter, I am many times told to give up on the insider. After all we are trying to reach people who are far from God. The problem is that the very phrase “follower of Christ” denotes a journey. The insider is on a journey seeking security, safety and truth. The problem is they are seeking it in the form of laws, rules and control. I was an insider and I am grateful Jesus didn’t give up on me and all the other insiders.
Meanwhile, Saul was still breathing out murderous threats against the Lord’s disciples. He went to the high priest and asked him for letters to the synagogues in Damascus, so that if he found any there who belonged to the Way, whether men or women, he might take them as prisoners to Jerusalem. As he neared Damascus on his journey, suddenly a light from heaven flashed around him. He fell to the ground and heard a voice say to him, “Saul, Saul, why do you persecute me?”Who are you, Lord?” Saul asked.
“I am Jesus, whom you are persecuting,” he replied. “Now get up and go into the city, and you will be told what you must do.”
The men traveling with Saul stood there speechless; they heard the sound but did not see anyone. Saul got up from the ground, but when he opened his eyes he could see nothing. So they led him by the hand into Damascus.
Paul was the chief of all insiders. All that he knew and trusted was changing around him by these rebels. How dare they attack the truth that his people had been following for centuries. This must have been very personal for Paul. These “followers of the Way” were basically saying that what Paul understood about God was wrong. I know I’d take that personal.
Reading this passage many times, God pointed something out to me. Paul loved God. He loved him enough to fight for him. Was Paul wrong? Absolutely! But know one can question his devotion.
The truth is Paul could not find the security he was looking for until he had control taken away from him. God took his mission and his sight. I remember when God did that to me. All that I believed crumbled to the ground and I felt blind and helpless and then the Light came.
LifePoint is for seekers. It’s a safe place to let God guide and instruct you. It’s a place where insiders are welcome, not to seek the secuity of control but the security that only comes when we get knocked off our ass, our eyes stricken blind and then reopened by the Light.
A Word to the Wise
You may be tempted to resent the insider. I know I sometimes am eventhough I was one. Remember, it’s not your job to create an Acts 9 experience for them. The moment you take on that responsibility, you become an insider. Let God be God.