I have often engaged in debate about the use of Christian freedom and such things as using contemporary material in worship. Criticism of these kinds of things generally takes anything that is not traditional and liturgical and in a misguided fashion lumps them in this dubious category of "Church Growth". Just because something is new or modern does not mean it is church growth. The problem with church growth are its motives. CG tends to focus on outward results as reflected in attendance, decisions for Christ, demographics, etc... So with that long introduction to the topic I think this joke sent to me by Cheryl touches on all the high points of debate such as personal ministry vs. the OHM, outcome based faith programs and the pitfalls of traditional worship. I was highly amused:
The Cab Driver Goes to Heaven
A cab driver reaches the Pearly Gates and announces his presence to St. Peter, who looks him up in his Big Book. Upon reading the entry for the cabbie, St. Peter invites him to pick up a silk robe and a golden staff and to proceed into Heaven.
A preacher is next in line behind the cabby and has been watching these proceedings with interest. He announces himself to St. Peter. Upon scanning the preacher's entry in the Big Book, St. Peter furrows his brow and says, "Okay, we'll let you in, but take that cloth robe and wooden staff."
The preacher is astonished and replies, "But I am a man of the cloth. You gave that cab driver a gold staff and a silk robe. Surely I rate higher than a cabbie."
St. Peter responded matter-of-factly: "This is heaven and up here, we are interested in results. When you preached, people slept. When the cabbie drove his taxi, people prayed."