Do you remember what it was like when you were younger? How easy it was to spot out the “cool kids”.
Maybe you were in elementary school at recess playing dodge ball. Before one kick was made, the teams were divided into your team and the other team. The other team always won. Those were the cool kids.
Maybe you were in college, sitting in the University center
falling asleep studying for a mid-term. Students filed in and out like cattle. But then it would happen. A group of people would enter, perhaps with Greek letters splashed all over their shirts (and backpacks and socks, for goodness sake) and the energy in the room instantly changed. You watch as they laugh, play around, and just generally attract attention wherever they go. Yep, those were the cool kids.
It doesn’t even matter what the scenario, you can generally find that there will be a group of people that rise above and set themselves apart. Maybe it is for their good looks. Maybe it is for their intelligence. Maybe even for their athleticism. Good grief, it may be for all three. That part doesn’t matter. What matters is that they exist. And they are cool.
Something about them draws you in like a magnet pointed at a box of paper clips. You want to be in that group. You may play it off and fool others into thinking that you don’t want to be cool. But you do. You want to surround yourself with that kind of coolness all the time. Don’t fight it, you know it’s true.
Well, friend…if cool kids were Muslims, I have found their Mecca.
It is called The Mayo Clinic, and it is for real.
I was blessed enough to be a patient at Mayo for three days. That’s right, three days. That’s all it took for me to become a believer. To be honest, it took about ten minutes. I cannot explain the energy of this place. And no, I’m not talking weird, cosmic energy the “world” speaks of. I’m talking about excitement, professionalism, genius, efficiency, love, joy, precision, and peace.
This place could not be in a more random area of our country, I mean, Rochester, Minnesota? Seriously? Yet, it is arguably the best hospital/research center in the world. I kid you not when I say that presidents come here. The Dalai Lama comes here twice a year for his physical. (Man I wish he were here this week, so I could give him some Jesus.) Royalty from all around the world fly here for medical care. This is the place.
Here they have answers.
Here they have hope.
Here they have peace.
The doctors and nurses here know with certainty that there is nowhere else in the world they could work better than this.
The support staffers know they are a part of something bigger. Something powerful.
The patients are instantly united here. We all can glance at each other quickly as our wheelchairs whiz by and just know. We are here for help. This is the place to be.
This ain’t no Miracle Whip clinic. This is the Mayo clinic.
This is for real.
While there, I found out that the Mayo Clinic employs over 30,000 people.
Thirty thousand people who are a part of something great. Thirty thousand who are one giant, united magnet. Something that people are drawn to. I can’t explain it better than that.
This, friend, is where all the cool kids are.
Whether they have M.D. at the end of their name, or whether they are, like me, being pushed in a wheelchair and only here for a day or two. You can just tell on the looks of everyone’s faces – they know. This is big.
I belong to an amazing church in Keller, Texas. Ryan and I have been going to The MetChurch for almost nine years. It is home to us. Is it a perfect church? Absolutely not. There is no such thing. In a world full of imperfect people, I am confused as to why people expect churches to be perfect. In fact, when suggested that our church has some hypocrites in it, our pastor replied, “That’s right! And we always have room for one more.” We are not disillusioned that The Met is perfect. But, we serve the One who was. When you walk into our church, you feel something. You can tell you are surrounded by people who have a certain something. Yes, I think my Met family is most certainly the cool kids. They have a love and joy and peace about them that draws you in. You just want to be with them.
This is God’s idea for the church.
We, as believers should have something about us that people are drawn to. And no, I don’t mean our fake personalities or blingy cross décor.
I mean Jesus.
If you are in relationship with Him, you should stand out as the coolest kid of all. Something about you shouldn’t make sense to those looking in. How is she so peaceful? Why doesn’t he ever get too angry? How can they be happy when they have so little money?
You and I should stand out.
I sometimes question if I do. Do you?
Does your life bear the fruit of the Holy Spirit? Do you show love? Do you spread joy? Does peace reign? Are you quick to be patient? Do you display kindness? Are your thoughts, motives, intentions and actions good? Are you faithful? Do you speak gently? Do you exhibit self-control?
This is not weakness. This is strength. This is not about being popular. This is about making Jesus’ Name great. This is not about you and me. This is about them. This is about all those out there who feel they are on the outside looking in. For all of those who feel like they’ve been rejected before. For all of those who have been burned before. For those who have surrounded themselves with “stuff” but still feel so empty. For all of those many people out there who are just…plain…lost.
We are the church. We are for real.
Friend, I challenge you, that if your church is not this way – change that. I don’t mean you should set up a meeting with your pastoral staff and tell them they need to whip this place into shape. I mean you (and I!) need to pray for our church leaders. We need to SERVE in the church and use our gifts to build up this family. We need to spend time in the Bible so that we have the spiritual food we need to look different in this world.
I cannot count the number of hospitals I have been to in the last four years. Ok, I can, it’s been three. But, still, three different hospitals, countless doctors, nurses, staff members that I have come into contact with. And nothing even comes close to the Mayo clinic. Not even in the same galaxy.
This place is for real.
Most people change churches every 3-4 years. That is a recent statistic I heard and just couldn’t believe. What kind of world do we live in that we can’t even stay committed to the church we go to? We aren’t “happy” with every single thing they do and every choice they make, so we bail. We move on to bigger, brighter, more popular churches are satisfied…for a little while.
That stops here.
Friend, this isn’t like the Mayo clinic where it is simply a matter of life and death. This is the church. And this is a matter or eternal life and death. Get invested. Commit. Tithe. Serve. Volunteer. Pray. Remember what you are here for. Be a part of the type of church that draws people in.
Friend, if you have a relationship with Jesus, then, congratulations, you are the cool kid now. Period.
If you aren't sure where you stand about this whole God thing - check it out. Talk to some people who claim to love Him. Ask your questions.Visit a church or two and see if you get what I describe. This isn't something you want to be unsure of.
Because, friend, this is about Jesus.
And, He is for real.