I used to hate when people used war rhetoric to speak about Christianity. Now I realize how important it is for us to acknowledge the "spiritual warfare" around us.
When you are serving God together, you are attacked spiritually. You get drained, and tired, and you need those around you to strengthen you when you get weak. When someone mentally and spiritually checks out of church leadership, it is devistating to everyone who served with them.
I think of Band of Brothers when I talk about this. I imagine being in a foxhole, much like the Bastogne foxholes, knowing that the enemy isn't going to let up, knowing that there is still a long fight ahead. I am already tired and trying to fight the fear inside of me, when I look beside me...
... and see one soldier stabbing my leg and throwing my food away, and another saying "I have to leave now," dropping his gun, and walking away. I ask him what the heck is going on, and he coldly says "it's personal."
When you commit to be a part of a family of believers, a "Band of Brothers," you forfeit the right to hold anything back. This IS warfare, and the danger from the enemy is real. Being in our clean, over-sterilized world has made this harder to comprehend, and this is why the church is failing to gain traction. Too many soldiers in the Lord's American Army are too busy looking out for themselves to be of any use against the enemy. They are more liable to point their guns at their fellow soldiers than at the enemy. When the battle gets tough, they either make it tougher, or simply walk away.
The saddest thing is, by walking away or making the battle tougher, they just bring more pain upon themselves, and those who dared to consider them brothers.
Church Plant Worship Leader, Youth Minister, Husband, Corporate Drone, Grad Student, and a Texan in a strange land known by the locals as "Arizona", which, when translated from the original Greek, means "Place that is not as cool as Texas."