If you have been worrying about the state of the Church during this strange time in our history, I want to share an encouraging image the Lord revealed to me this morning. In the image, I saw a person walking toward a doorway. They were wearing multiple layers of clothing. It appeared they were trying to wear every garment they owned to the point it restricted their full range of motion. They had to waddle to walk.
Each excess garment was made from the cloth of assumption. These weren’t wrong assumptions; they were valid for a time but were no longer required. The accumulated garments needed to be shed. Then, I realized I was seeing the Church, the Bride of Christ, walking toward the future.
As the person moved closer to the doorway, they began to remove layer after layer of garments. I was amazed at how many layers the person was wearing. I also wondered how they could even move encumbered as they were. Then the person entered the doorway of transition and emerged on the other side clad only in the simplest of garments. They appeared light and agile, no longer encumbered. The uncovering revealed a lean and purposeful person whose eyes were filled with confidence and clarity. In one hand was a sword with a freshly sharped edge. They appeared ready for any challenge.
The Church is being disrobed. Following our disrobing, something new will emerge. The new is not really “new.” It is the revealing of what was there all along, only hidden and encumbered by our assumptions. If we can remain focused on Jesus while disrobing, not on the maintenance of our current ministry model or even its survival, we will emerge from this time a lean, refocused and simplified Church.
We cannot waddle awkwardly into the future, wearing the assumptions of the past and expect different results in the future. The Church I saw was like David when he faced Goliath. We are being made agile and free, so we can move forward unencumbered by the past, able to address the giants of deception that are waiting for us in the future.