(Extracted from "I've got You Covered" – by Stuart Gramenz – pg 74,75)
Some church goers have felt more like pet parrots than eagles. As we know, the owners of pet parrots gain great pleasure out of hand-feeding them and showing them to others. As a result of being caged, they are confined in their activities and, because they can't enjoy the natural pleasure of flying, other things are placed in a cage to keep them amused. They are also trained to talk, but can only repeat what their owner teaches them to say.
Those believers who fee like pet parrots are usually provided with all the care and counselling they need. They are hand-fed with well-prepared, spiritual food every week. AS a result they know their Bible, can repeat Scriptures, but still can't fly and soar. They are occupied with weekly meetings, instead of meeting with the Lord and meeting the needs of others.
In some cases their captivity is ont a physical but a mental mindset. They have been convinced that, basically, as long as they attend every week, don't peck at others and come along for the ongoing hand-feeding program, they are fulfilling their role. However, even with all the counselling, care and Bible knowledge, they become dissatisfied. They go out for altar calls … but nothing alters. In their hearts they know that something is missing. For many, that frustration finally leads to a sense of pessimism. Their only hope of soaring is on the day they die, when they will get their heavenly wings and fly to that Great Aviary in the sky.
The One Winged Parrot
There is a second group of believers who, although they feel partially released, still sense that they fit in the parrot category. Some pet owners keep their parrots permanently caged, but others, realizing the birds need greater freedom, allow them out. Complete liberty is, however, not an option and to stop them from leaving the house, the owners continually clip the feathers on one wing. This allows a degree of freedom but, as the bird attempts to fly, it can only flutter around in circles.
Now the Lord is the Spirit, and wherever the Spirit of the Lord is, he gives freedom (2 Cor. 3:17 NLT)
There have been some believers who have been equipped for the work of their ministry to some degree. They've been trained to move in the gifts of the Spirit, pray for the sick, but are basically confined to "in-house" programs. Even with the restoration of home churches, most of the ministry takes place in the meeting. Those who sense they have a limited element of freedom will gain a degree of satisfaction. Finally, after ministering "in-house" year after year, they feel they are going around in circles and end up dizzy and exhausted.
Jesus, our eagle modle, didn't confine His ministry to a weekly meeting. His gifts and power were released as He went about doing good and healing all.
TRADITIONAL LEADERSHIP VISION
Because they purchased them, parrot owners have control over the future of their pet. Some spiritual leaders have seen believers as "their people" and have a planned vision for them to help build the leader's church. God has paid a high price for all believers. He is the only owner and He has a specific purpose for each one. The Lord has given a vision to all leaders … to equip believers to become Jesus imitators and to be led by Him (Eph 4:11-13)
This will need the impartation of the apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors and teachers, not just the one leader struggling to fully equip believers. Having an equipping team will also help remove the old traditional "my people" syndrome.
Unfortunately in the past, some in traditional church leadership have concentrated on their vision of "in house" ministry and haven't received the revelation of the present "eagle truths". Reaching the lost is advocated but having as many people as possible attend services or home church meetings has been the basic intention.
Wow … what do others think about this?