This was one movie that truly surprised me. I was completely stunned at the end. Of course all the clues were there all along but I missed them. When the little boy says “I see dead people”, it was chilling and sad at the same time. Anyway R. Page Matthews, the Directo of Development for the Lutheran Hispanic Missionary Institute took that tag line and and wrote this little article, that backs up some of the discussions that have taken place on this site. Churches as the age seem to forget their mission and purpose. Sadly I think that newer churches forget too. Once the building becomes the mission there are problems. Any way here is a part of Matthews writing. You can check out www.missionaryinstitute.org.
If there is any consistent trend that I have noticed over the 30+ years of my ministry, it is that the longer people are Christians, and the longer churches exist, the less likely it is that they will have strong connections with the unchurched community around them. They simply stop seeing dead people. Before you quickly disagree with me, take a moment and list all of the people you know. Now, indicate which ones you know to be Christians and which ones you know who are not. How many are on the second list? Any at all?
This summer I have attended five district conventions for the LCMS. During one of the conventions I heard a report that the district had experienced one adult baptism for every 30 churches in the district. Of course, this does not include the children, but can it be said that these churches are seeing the dead people in their community?
New Christians win people to Christ faster than older Christians. New churches win people to Christ faster than older churches. These two truths underscore the need for adult baptisms and new church planting. And they should also send the message to older Christians and older churches that they need a strong renewal of their vision. Each Christian needs to be able to say, “I see dead people”, and of course, to want to bring them once again to the land of the living. If we truly have the heart of Christ, then we should weep when he wept.