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Washington, DC Prayer Meeting, October 28, 2011

At Hylton Memorial Chapel, Woodbridge, VA. 5:00 pm

God Uses Ordinary People For Extra-Ordinary Miracles

Is Your God Bigger than My God?

I received a call from a young man very distraught. He tried to work on a project in a mega church and failed. He was placed in charge of putting a program together for an anniversary celebration in this church. He called all those that were supposed to be included in the committee. None of them responded. A couple of people who responded out of the twenty people in the planning committee gave him all kinds of excuses. After trying a couple of months to get the people together, he failed. He went to the pastor of the church and surrendered his resignation from being the chair of the committee. A well known educated and older person in the church was later nominated to head the committee. As soon as the new chairperson was nominated, everybody in the committee was ready to work with him. The young man previously made the chairperson became disenchanted. He left the mega church and went to another smaller church. He was so distraught, he walked away from his fiancée who refused to leave the church with him. He felt the pain of rejection by the church members who refused to work with him. Being a new person to the church and freshly out of college, he had no social connections. He was a nonentity and the people in the committee were not willing to work with him.

The pain of rejection this young man suffered is the state of some churches today. If you are not well connected, I can’t do business with you. We are very big on preaching how Jesus can make us rich while preaching less about the difficult journey of life, and a pathway to eternal salvation. Bishop GE Patterson said, "Most of the mega churches are preaching the gospel of the dollar while preaching less about how people can gain eternal salvation." The Bible passages have been reduced to mere slogans, and the process of living the Word of God is meaningless. The bigger price is the prestige of serving in a church position due to business opportunities associated with the position. We therefore refuse to work with a new kid in the block because he was suddenly given the opportunity that many older people have been seeking for a long time. The young man had no chance. He thought he was in a church. He did not realize that the church has turned to a big business enterprise where only the biggest, the well-known, and the well-connected will survive. The weak will be slaughtered, or crash and burn, just like in the regular corporate America where dog eat dog. The young man was crushed thinking that such a thing should never have happened in a church. Was he in a church, or in a club?

Three big issues destroying the church today are money, power, and position (celebrity image). The church is no different from the secular world. Yet, we wonder why so many people are walking away from the church and finding a new religion. Try to approach some of the star preachers on the radio or television and find out how many of them will respond to you. If you are not a relative of a well-known person, or an established mega star within the ministry, you will not receive many responses even if you have a hidden million dollars to give them. Like one man said, "Those mega church preachers will treat you as if their God is bigger than your God." I responded to him by saying, "Such a place may have the biggest congregation in the nation, but is it a true house of God?"

After a well known preacher from Florida died in New York in August 2011, one of the older women in my Bible class asked me a question. "How could this situation have been prevented?" I first explained to her that a troubled man in a hotel by himself had no chance. Even if he had called some of the so-called mega ministers like him, they would not have been able to respond quickly enough to save his life. One of the best solutions is for such a person never to travel alone. Sadly, people came to his funeral to cry over his dead body telling people that he was a broken man. Sorry, that’s too late! Yet, the same people did not have enough time to seriously get him adequate help before he succumbed to the challenges brought by his problems. What is the value of a mega church when the mega pastor fell by the challenges of his life? He was left alone in the cold, and he died alone in the cold!

King Nebuchadnezzar believed he created his own wealth. Evidently he must have been looking down on other people with great pride in his heart. His pride offended God who taught him a great lesson and brought him down on his knees. When King Saul lost favor with God, he was reduced to a king consulting a medium for prophecy about his future. He had to disguise himself like an ordinary man to get the cooperation of the Medium of Endor. King Herod in the book of Acts sat on his throne as a god. An angel of God came down and slapped the day light out of him. He died eaten by worms.

I’m always very scared when people worship money, power and fame. It is far worse when such a situation is the order in the house of God. Because you are the pastor of a mega church, your God is bigger than my God? Is your entire ministry wrapped around your ego, money, power, and fame? Jesus is a man with a heart of compassion. He said, "Deny yourself, take your cross and follow me" (St. Matthew 16:24). He welcomes everybody into his kingdom including; the homeless, the lost, the poor, the naked, the hungry, the incarcerated, and the nonentities. Jesus never discriminates against anybody because of the person’s position. Yet, in some churches today, you can only be heard if you have money, power, and fame. Otherwise just forget it, because you are just not good enough. You are therefore a reject! A celebrity dog has a better chance of being heard, than you – a nonentity! We still claim we are serving the Lord.

To anybody working in the ministry and had been unsuccessful in getting the attention of those on top, or celebrity preachers for mentor, do not be dismayed. If the Lord had called you, he will provide for you. The same God who called you will plant people along your pathway to connect with your destiny. Some of them may be seasonal facilitators while others may stay with you for a long time. Those who refuse to help you while you are struggling are not part of your bridge to where you are going. Do not allow the frivolousness of man to destroy the divine vision impregnated in you by God. Help may not come from where you expect. Remember to look for help directly from the Lord. He is the only true source of your divine help, not people. It does not matter how big some people may be in your eyes, they may be pigmies in stature before God. People may fail you. But, God who sends you on a mission will never walk away from you regardless to your challenges.

"Those who wait on the Lord shall renew their strength. They shall mount up with wings as the eagle. They shall run and not weary, they shall walk and not faint" (Isaiah 40:31 )

by Yinka Vidal, author, Closer Walk With Jesus