Below was submitted for publication to local newspapers. These articles are limited to 250 words.
Saying “the church is full of hypocrites” is like saying “hospitals are full of sick people.” Yes, the church is full of people who are sick - sick of living lives hypocritical to the God who is real. Tired of letting the world suck life out with false pleasures never fulfilled, they want the quality life – abundant and overflowing with meaning, peace, and joy here and now.
Like the hospital, not everyone who goes to church gets “cured”. After all, humility is hard, especially for us hypocrites, and acknowledging our own hypocrisy is where the road to healing starts. The fact that everyone who goes into a hospital doesn’t come out healed doesn’t stop people from going there – especially when the disease is serious and the hospital is the only option to save your life.
Then there’s that hypocrisy that some “honest” folks practice – looking only at the bad and ignoring the radically transformed lives they see coming out of the church. Everyone knows someone changed far beyond the power of any psychiatrist or Oprah. In fact, the “cure” is no more “inside” the walls of the church than it is the hospital. The power is in a personal encounter with the Truth of the God and Christ the church should represent.
If you can only see hypocrites when you look at the church, then I guess we’re just your kind of place. We’ll save a place on the pew for you.