Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Keeping Up – Reaching the Masses

Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that you may prove what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect. - Romans 12.2

It’s official. As of yesterday, Toyota is the world’s largest automobile maker, passing General Motors. That doesn’t mean Japan is making all of the money; Toyota makes 10 vehicles in North America: the Avalon, Camry, Corolla, Matrix, Sequoia, Sienna, Solara, Tacoma, Tundra, and Lexus RX330 (did you know that a Lexus is just a well-insulated Toyota?). The Camry Hybrid is made in Kentucky, by the way.

Some say American pride is taking a beating. However, the reality is that we all now live in a global economy. And consumers these days don’t ask where something is made; they want to know, “Is it dependable?” “Will it run?” “Is it well made?” I’ve never owned a Toyota, but I have owned three Nissans. I spent very little money on them; they were well made, affordable, and dependable. Two of them were made in Tennessee.

While I’m not an economist, it seems to me that General Motors dethroning could be tied to an attitude of being too comfortable and assuming that “We’ll always be here.” That’s a dangerous attitude. That attitude lead to the downfall of the railroad – they didn’t keep up, and just assumed that they would always be king.

If the Church isn’t careful, we’ll fall into the same boat. We have to continually examine ourselves and ask the questions: Are we reaching society? Jesus didn’t say that we were to stay in our building and have people come to us; he said, “Go out… make disciples.”

While we aren’t to be of the world, we are in the world – are we keeping up to reach the masses?


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