Feed Me

We have much to say about this, but it is hard to explain because you are slow to learn. In fact, though by this time you ought to be teachers, you need someone to teach you the elementary truths of God’s word all over again. You need milk, not solid food!  Anyone who lives on milk, being still an infant, is not acquainted with the teaching about righteousness.  But solid food is for the mature, who by constant use have trained themselves to distinguish good from evil.
Hebrews 5:11-14
It’s all too common to hear of someone leaving the church with the comment: “I just am not being fed here.” Many have difficulty arguing this point, because we all want people to be growing. Some leaders respond with guilt that they haven’t been providing “meat” for the people. Others lash out and justify the last several weeks of teaching. I wonder if the problem isn’t actually with the teaching, but more with everyone’s perspective of the church.
In today’s culture, we always want to know “what’s in it for me?” as opposed to seeking how we can invest in others. In the same way, we come to church expecting to be spoon-fed from the revealed Word of God of which we each have a copy in our homes. The early church was devoted to the apostles’ teaching (Acts 2:42), but they did not have a copy of God’s Word for themselves.
Now, I’m not attempting to downplay the preaching of the Word. I believe all leaders should be serious about the study and delivery of the Word in a way that magnifies the one true God. However, God has seen fit to give us the written Word with which we can study and show ourselves approved unto God (2 Tim. 2:15). If I claim that I am “not being fed,” isn’t that a statement about my intentional study of the Word?
Perhaps our perspective of church should be one of coming together as the body for celebration and service. We come in celebration of the Word we have been feasting upon all week long. The pastor’s message becomes one of encouragement and challenge to “keep on” as opposed to the only “holy spoon” with which we must be fed to survive. We come in service as we live life upon life. We serve one another as we correct or affirm our interpretations of the Word from our weekly feasting. We also serve by collaborating on ways to practically live out the Word in a way that joins with God in His mission.
Sadly, those who leave for “not being fed” are, more often than not, long-time professing believers. They still need the milk of a one-a-week message because they’ve yet to acquire the meat of a daily feasting on the Word of God. May we be people who are feeding on God’s Word, celebrating with fellow feeders, and gathering to invest what we’ve learned into the life of another.

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