Scott Hodge

Blog

Depth?

Apr 21, 2005
21 Comments

I’m only going to blog about this once because criticism is a part of my daily life and if I write about everytime someone doesn’t like the job I’m doing, this blog would be pretty depressing…  So here it goes – one time only.

Beginning next Sunday, all of our sermons will be spoken in ancient Greek and Hebrew. 

Why?  Because we want to provide people with more depth. 

Huh?

"I want more depth."

What does this mean?  Someone just told me that a person they know made that statement in regards to our church.  But what does that mean? 

Perhaps what they should be saying is, "I want the the PERCEPTION of depth." 

The question I have for someone who says that is, "How’s your love walk?  Are you loving God?  Are you loving people (all)?  How many relationships with unchurched people have you built in your life this past year?  Perhaps ‘depth’ is not what you need.  You think you do, but you probably wouldn’t even know what to do with ‘depth’ if it jumped all over you."

Ok, so maybe that’s not very nice. 

But here’s the thing…  That person isn’t ready for depth anyway. 

Here’s the proof: If they have a problem with me and what I’m doing, they should have come directly to me.  Isn’t that the Biblical way?  But instead, they went to someone else who has no power to change anything in the first place. 

WARNING WILL ROBINSON.

Matthew 18 – "If your brother wrongs you, go and show him his fault, between you and him privately." 

Oh wait!  Sorry.  That’s not deep enough. 


21 Responses to “Depth?”

  1. Rachel says:

    Man, you nailed that one. I can’t stand when I hear that out of people’s mouths and yet see the fruit of their so called depth! Preach on, I’m listening.

  2. Abe says:

    OK, Scott man the Windy City has really started to get to you aye? It must be the traffic, wind, cold, ? J/K Good Word. I believe that people are people so why should it be that you and I should get along so awfully (only someone who grew up in the eighties will get it) . Good times, Great Blessings.
    Brian

  3. Betsy says:

    I almost added another gripe, then thought better.
    Not that pastoring is a popularity contest, but if you were to poll your congregation, I’d bet you’d have a high “approval rating”. So shake the dust off your feet and go on… you’re doing a great job!
    There will always be people who don’t feel like church is “deep” enough until you break out the KJV and talk about the symbolism of the Tabernacle. Fact is, I’ve come to realize that true spirituality truly is how you walk Monday through Saturday, not the vocabulary and “depth” of Sunday morning.

  4. heather says:

    I think you thought that through the right way. Like you said, he should have come directly to you if he was really serious about it. Also, if he’s the only one in the whole congregation that wants more Greek stuff, then I guess you have to see how it would really benefit the congregation as a whole. Plus, I think if you started integrating Greek stuff in your teachings it may serve as a constant reminder of the guy who asked you to do it in the first place. lol. just kidding.
    I think it is way more important that he gets a grasp on LOVE, and God’s character, vs. who knows the most Greek stuff. Maybe you could tell him to do it in his own study time, look up Greek stuff….lol. Ok anyways, I guess if he does end up approaching you about it in person, maybe you could tell him that is not what you feel is best for the rest of the congregation and give him a source of someone who preaches a lot of greek stuff….like college……haha. sorry, I’ll stop now. Well gotta go….

  5. heather says:

    Ok I mis read that whole thing, lol. Sorry about my long post. Just disregard what I just wrote. uhhm, yah nevermind.

  6. It might sound harsh to say, but not every church is a right “fit” for every person. Maybe this person who feels the need to be critical via gossip just needs to find another church home that gives them what they think they want. By saying they need more depth could really mean a whole host of things: from different style music, different style of prayer and worship, different style of preaching, etc… I think more churches need to realize that they can’t expect everybody to like the style of “church” that they put on every Sunday morning and in realizing this they need to be prepared to let go of people who are looking for something different.

  7. Terry Storch says:

    When you hear the “depth” thing coming….run! Scott, it will only get worse and much harder, I can promise you that. Stay focused on your vision, and guard it will all you heart, soul and might. Every dynamic church that I have ever talked to gets hit with the same thing “depth”. Run away and stay vertical with your vision brotha!
    A great thing to remember is: If you are not hearing the “depth” argument, you are probably doing something wrong!

  8. Gary says:

    Your post made me laugh out loud and spit coke all over my computer screen. Thanks! :) All I can say about your post is been there, done that, got the T-shirt.

  9. heather says:

    Did I mention I was on drugs? Hydracodeine to be exact.

  10. Kevin says:

    Scott read your blog on the individual wanting more depth.
    No joking around He may have a legitimate need in this area. I am not saying you are not teaching in depth lessons, but some people who are teachers by nature like to dig and explore the scripture from every angle. He should be doing this on his own also. All people have areas in their lives that they are not living according to the word, but that does not mean they can not go into the deeper things of God. I wish I always walked in love, had pure thoughts, did not snap at the wife, did not gossip said shucky darn when I slammed my finger in the car door. Because I am not up to par in every area of my life does not mean that I must stay in the milk of the Word until I get every area of my life in order. I would suggest you go to this person and find out what the root cause of his disgruntled attitude is. I would also discuss with him that he should come to you when he has a problem instead of spreading discontent. The brother who stated the church might not be a fit for him hit the nail on the head. If that is the case, help him find a place that suits his personality that way you, the congregation and he can be at peace. If this is an individual who is a constant thorn in the flesh, than have him explain to you what

  11. matt says:

    I agree with you Kevin. Different people are into different things spiritually. Some are all about evangelism, others about serious study. Well put.
    I used to think that deep was almost wrong and that deep could be accounted for by saying yeah, but we’re getting a ton of people saved. But after being around a church that while focused on evangelism, has a pretty serious “discipleship” aspect also. I see the benefit and drawback to both. Lot’s of salvations, but people who are weak spiritually or few salvations but people that see angles on regular basis or see cancer disappear. The key is balance. Balance evangelism and milky sermons and a strong sense of acceptance of unchurched/God’s love/loving God with loving meaty sermons and practicing the gifts of the spirit.

  12. brad says:

    one of the issues we seem to have in the church at large is a problem with communication, and we especially don’t like confrontation, which seems to be why their is so much offense in the church.
    i like the thought of helping people find what they need. this is a proactive approach and everyone wins. i recently was informed of some people who had differing ideas from our church. my wife and I decided to invite them to dinner and talk, not to save them from leaving, but to hear their hearts and lead them somewhere they could grow and develop. the first little while was awkward, but once we got past that and didn’t listen from the point of offense, i think it was great to hear their perspectives and what they were wanting, which in the end was the same thing we wanted, but since there was no communication there was frustration (frustration ends where communication begins). i mean nowadays to find people who are hungry for God can be a rarity in some communities, so isn’t it essential that we fulfill our mission statements of leading people in a growing relationship with God regardless if they like our sermons or our churches for that matter? doesn’t the mission statement of our church still apply to the “deep” seeker?
    i listened to their thoughts and views, and guess what? I actually learned something from the conversation that will stregthen our core values. i was able to point them to a conference, and gave them a few churches to explore that had the feel they were looking for. guess what? they actually took my suggestions to heart and follwed through. it seems in the end, what they really wanted was to accepted and loved regardless of not seeing things exactly like us.
    love never ceases to be effective!

  13. kate says:

    I like the suggestions that this person might need to seek out a better “church fit” – However, I think it’s important to realize that there is no “perfect” church out there. Every church is made of humans – an imperfect lot. Many who are discontented with the church at large have not realized that.
    Also, I hear ya on the perception of depth. Because who knows what this person is really looking for. Perhaps they’re looking for a feeling rather than knowledge, but think that they just want more exegesis study. Many people feel that the church should provide them with all that they need and forget to do their own study, prayer, etc.
    Oh and remember, not all Jesus’ followers were happy with or understood all of His leadership decisions all the time. Not that you’re Jesus…but you get the point, right? =)

  14. Colleen says:

    Scott,
    I find myself almost every Sunday coming home and wanting to study the scriptures that were talked about during the sermon. I think that is what is suppose to happen. I want you to know that you are doing an awesome job with the sermons and with all of your responsibilities as being lead Pastor. I know your dad is very proud of you. PS. I think we already have enough “greek” if you know what I mean. JK

  15. jamey says:

    scott, I have an effective phrase for you everythime a “HATER” (oops not deep enough), i mean a proactive opinionated congragant. You just say this, “I said yo mama, ya, I said yo mama ya, I say yo mama and you daddy, and your greasey greasey grandmammy! – if that didn’t help sorry! – it works for me!

  16. Dave says:

    Mat 16:1 When the Pharisees and Sadducees arrived, as a test they asked Jesus to show them a sign from heaven.
    Mat 16:2 He replied to them, “You say, ‘Red sky at night, what a delight!
    Mat 16:3 Red sky in the morning, cloudy and storming.’ You know how to interpret the appearance of the sky, yet you can’t interpret the signs of the times?
    Mat 16:4 An evil and adulterous generation craves a sign, but no sign will be given to it except the sign of Jonah.” Then he left them and went away.
    Jesus had the same problem. Your in good company my friend. People are in constant want of a religious experiance. we tend to forget that a relationship with Jesus Christ the way that he made for us has nothing at all to do with religion. God desires our hearts not sacrifices and lip service. We are like sheep and are naturally going to wonder away from the shephard, thinking that our ways are better. I hope that I have made scense.

  17. hank says:

    Great subject/topic. My heart tends to agree with all of you who say it’s up to the individual to search the scriptures for more depth but I have problems when some of our sermons are more like “Skim Milk” instead of “Whole Milk”! I have come to understand that lately there is a huge exodus of Christians from the “Church” because they feel unchallenged and underfed.
    We seem to be so preoccupied with the babes in Christ that there is little regard to the wariours who need recharging. The hospitals that we claim to be for the wounded soldiers have become nurseries. All I’m trying to suggest here is that when we prepare for delivering the Word let’s make sure we have the total Word in mind. Not just proving the point we want to make!

  18. Harry Miller says:

    Matthew 18 has its place, but it must be submitted to the life of Christ. Matthew 23 Jesus preaches against the hyprocritical leadership in the temple. 1 Corinthians 5 Paul reproves unrepentant sin in the body and encourages the brethren to do the same. Romans 1 warns believers not to take pleasure in those who do sin or they will receive the same judgment.
    The unity of faith in Christ is accomplished by following Christ:
    Mark 8
    34: And when he had called the people unto him with his disciples also, he said unto them, Whosoever will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me.
    35: For whosoever will save his life shall lose it; but whosoever shall lose his life for my sake and the gospel’s, the same shall save it.
    36: For what shall it profit a man, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul?
    37: Or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul?
    38: Whosoever therefore shall be ashamed of me and of my words in this adulterous and sinful generation; of him also shall the Son of man be ashamed, when he cometh in the glory of his Father with the holy angels.

  19. chris says:

    I believe that the whole concept of

  20. chris says:

    When people are asking for depth these days (not all people, there are actually, I think, 2 people out there who truly want depth as defined as deep growth

  21. Ted says:

    Well said Chris…well said…

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