Getting Fed

Todd

16 Comments

  1. November 12, 2007 at 6:34 pm — Reply

    As a preamble to my comment: I hate Christianese. I grew up with it. And when I really started to think about the words I was using, I realized the vast majority of them are meaningless to me. But anyway …

    Yes, I have used the words “getting fed” before. I guess this phrase makes sense in terms of Jesus being the Bread of Life. But I think far too often people use that phrase as their justification for leaving a church. (As in “I wasn’t getting fed.”)

  2. November 13, 2007 at 12:36 am — Reply

    I’m not sure what ‘getting fed’ means…but in my experience i understand ‘not being fed’ to mean

    “I am a spiritual slut and i change churches every 9 months because i seem to be plateauing in my growth”

  3. November 13, 2007 at 11:29 am — Reply

    potluck?

  4. November 13, 2007 at 12:31 pm — Reply

    I’ve heard this a good deal, & I must say that I don’t really dislike the phrase as much as the point of view that it generally comes from.
    You see, it was my understanding that as a Christian I have been called to love & serve God & to love & serve my neighbors (fellow human beings). I don’t see where “getting fed” is ever stated as something that I need to have as a goal. I see plenty of places where “feeding others,” whether literally or figuratively, is something that I should strive to do. If someone wants to leave the church that I go to because they aren’t “getting fed,” then I say go ahead. There’s a Taco Bueno right down the street. As individual parts of the body, our main concern should be feeding others. Our last concern should be getting ourselves fed. I believe that this would fall under the category of selfishness, which should have no place in the body. Our goal is not for our own benefit.
    As CS Lewis says, “If you look for truth, you may find comfort in the end; if you look for comfort you will not get neither comfort or truth only soft soap and wishful thinking to begin, and in the end, despair.”

  5. Kristin
    November 13, 2007 at 2:40 pm — Reply

    I’m just playing devil’s advocate here but in response to Sam, where does or how does one get full so that they can then turn around and feed/serve/love others?

  6. November 13, 2007 at 3:12 pm — Reply

    I am not saying that people do not get filled, but rather that it should not be their priority. Our priority, purpose, & goal is to love & serve our creator. We will not be filled until God’s glory is our one & only priority. It is a non-negotiable for following Christ. “If anyone would follow me, he must deny himself…” That’s one of the paradoxes of our faith. I cannot be filled until I do not worry whether or not I am full. That’s one of the amazing things about following Christ. The one who sets out in search of personal gain will continue to be empty. However, the one who sets out only for Christ’s gain will be given more than the selfish man could ever dream. Have I come to this level of faith? No. Am I even good at living it out sometimes? I’d have to say not really. I’m just as selfish as the next guy, but I can at least be honest with my self & realize that my desire for personal gain is one that is direct opposition to glorifying Christ.

  7. Kristin
    November 13, 2007 at 4:57 pm — Reply

    I;m not saying that you were saying that I was saying that you were saying that I was…

    No, I just wanted to see what you WOULD say. I know I become filled because of the Church (because of God)…my cup runneth over and so I can pour into others.

    When my cup is low it has something to with me and not with God or someone else not filling me so yes, I would certainly agree that church-hopping is not the answer…and I like what you said, Sam about this seeming paradox of our faith…that what fills us is when we empty ourselves 🙂

  8. Bobby
    November 13, 2007 at 10:50 pm — Reply

    Perhaps, just for arguments sake, the phrase is sometimes used by people who have a hard time articulating their discontent. I know spiritual sluts and church hoppers use the phrase but so do people who know that when they first became a follower of Jesus a hunger was filled. They also know their struggles become more complex, that pain is hard to spiritualize every time and that a second or third time through the scriptures tends to bring out new questions as well as insights. If those who teach them insist on a smiling, “first principles” based approach and want to keep things positive so avoid trouble they may feel the pangs of a hunger that is hard to describe. And if their questions are met with pat (but unsatisfying) sermons and unkind words if they ask difficult questions in class. Hunger, whether physically or spiritually, can be an excuse. It can also be a symptom.
    Todd, do the last couple of questions have anything to do with the recent developments with the Willow Creek churches?
    Sorry this post was so long.
    Bobby

  9. November 14, 2007 at 12:47 am — Reply

    It seems to me that most of the language that we use in talking about church is a way to baptize our shallow view of church. I agree with Kristin that church also needs to be a place where the people of God get fed. The problem is that we tend to get a real stockholder mentality with church. If the preacher doesn’t preach well, we move on. If the music doesn’t give us goosebumps we move on. As if the church was ever meant to be primarily programs. When we think of church in terms of what happens one hour on Sunday morning we have already lost so much, we shouldn’t be surprised when people start church hopping.

  10. November 16, 2007 at 9:36 am — Reply

    Hey Toddman,
    There is a book I want you to read if you are so inclined It’s called “Death By Suburb” by a guy named Goetz. Good book but different. There is a chapter that speaks to this question.

    If you don’t want to read it, that won’t hurt my feelings so don’t feel like I’m bullying you into some sort of literary prison…He just presents a fresh viewpoint. Peace, yo.

  11. November 17, 2007 at 10:25 am — Reply

    Good responses. I may have to pick up that book.

    In my experience it has been you don’t do things the way I want them done but that doesn’t sound good so I must feel this way because I’m not being fed.

  12. Troy
    November 19, 2007 at 9:59 am — Reply

    I put “getting fed” into the same category as “being stretched.” I don’t know where either phase came from. I assume, like most church platitudes, they are from modern “christian” literature.

    I view both statements as leading judgements. It’s like going with a friend to a resturant that they have raved about for weeks only to find out that the food stinks. I’ll be content with letting God judge our worship.

  13. November 19, 2007 at 10:14 am — Reply

    Bobby, no, not directly. It may, perhaps, have slided into my subconscious.

    Alan, I want a new book. However, if my previous non-fiction record is any indication, I’ll check it out (or buy it), read the introduction and first two chapters, declare my love for it and then never pick it up again.

    Troy, thanks for the comment. Welcome to the Todd Blog. How do we let God judge our worship? How do we know we are being pleasing to Him?

  14. Troy
    November 19, 2007 at 11:19 am — Reply

    Thanks Todd,

    “How do we let God judge our worship?”
    We don’t tell him that what we are doing is pleasing to him. In other words, we don’t offer him a gift and then tell him how much he is going to like it.

    “How do we know we are being pleasing to Him?”
    We offer ouselves as living sacrifices and worship in spirit and truth. We set aside our own preferences and praise him according to his.

  15. November 19, 2007 at 11:50 am — Reply

    Todd,
    You read the introduction to books? Wow. Maybe I should start reading that.

  16. November 19, 2007 at 11:51 am — Reply

    Trust me, reading the whole book is significantly more valuable than the introduction. If you can manage the whole thing, I’d stick with that.

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Getting Fed