Monday, April 7, 2008

It's Over Before It Begun!

I love the Rocky movies, all of them!

In Rocky 3, Rock is the champ. He's the best in the world and he's not just sitting on it; he's had 10 title defenses and smoked every one of them. As he's making his announcement that it's time to retire he hears a voice from the crowd, Clubber Lang. Clubber demands that Rocky fights him and gives him a shot at the title. Rocky agrees but his trainer/manager, Mickey, argues that he shouldn't take the challenge. In fact, Mickey tries so hard to discourage Rock from fighting that he says he won't train/manage him anymore.

Later Rock is talking with Mickey trying to understand why he won't train and manage him anymore and he tells Rock something that hits Rocky hard: all of his title defenses were fakes. They were set ups! They were good fighters but they had no chance of ever beating Rocky. Suddenly Rocky is crushed.

The day comes to fight Clubber Lang and Rocky is beaten badly! As Apollo Creed tries to train Rocky for a rematch with Clubber, Rocky begins to give up. The reality that his previous title defenses were set ups sinks home! Apollo exclaims, "it's over!". Rocky's wife tries to talk with him about but all Rocky says is, "I don't know who I am anymore; I don't know the truth." Rocky had lost his confidence as a fighter.

I believe Christianity is in the same boat today. My fear is that Christians have been going through life without real challenges and without real victories, giving us a weak and false depiction of faith in Christ and robbing us of who we truly are in Christ. When our Clubber Lang comes along what will happen? Rocky ended up getting the "eye of the tiger", his passion. But will Christians do the same or will many who we thought were Christians just walk away from the church?

I believe many non-Christians are currently going through real struggles and real difficulties and Church people are trying to pull them into a world with fake challenges and fake victories and they can see through it. They don't want that. Those that are hungry for God want real victories. Could it be that the church is busy playing the role of Mickey, giving it's people a weak and false depiction of faith in Christ, never putting its partners (members) to the test. Never challenging them? What happens to the so-called-Christian who doesn't know who he/she really is in Christ? When Clubber Lang comes a knocking won't they respond too, "I don't know who I am anymore; I don't know the truth!"

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