Sunday, October 25, 2009

The burger illustration

Some years ago a fast food chain ran an ad where a little old lady asked a cashier "where's the beef?". A good patty of quality ground beef is of course what all of us want when we get a burger. But I wondered if the same kind of question can be used in the church.The bible records the story of a group of people who inquired of the apostle Phillip "Sir we would see Jesus" (John 12:21).
If you are like me there have been times you have sat in church and thought "Where's Jesus!". This is what the people in John were saying. You know in many ways the church is like a burger, Jesus is the like the beef. He is what we really came to church for. Nothing else will curb our spiritual hunger, we must see Jesus. But sometimes he is made the smallest part of the burger, or church.
A good burger has condiments that complement the beef, mustard ketchup pickles etc.. But they are no substitute for the beef. In church we have many things that are good and when used correctly complement our visit with Jesus. Things like music, drama, bible study, and many other ministries. But they can't take the place of Jesus.
A good burger also has a wonderful bun. A good sweet fluffy hunk of bread that holds the beef and condiments together, but alone is little more than fluffy hot air. Church also has many things that hold everything together but by themselves are little more than fluffy hot air.
A good burger gets out of balance and loses it's appeal when roles are reversed and the main object is reduced in size and importance. That's why we too cry "where's the beef" when we get a burger with a large bun, and lots of condiments, but little beef. We seldom get another one.
Church also gets out of balance when we forget what is really important, Jesus. He is what's it's all about.
I pray that you don't have to holler "Where's Jesus?" in your church. If you do perhaps you should quietly ask the leadership in your churchthe question the people so long ago asked Phillip in John 12, "Sir we would see Jesus."