Do You Live A McDonald’s “McChurchianity” Type of Life?

Copyright 2006 Roger and Eileen Himes

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Do you live a McDonald’s type of Christianity? If you do, perhaps you even attend “McChurchianity.” A lot of Christians live this way. Let me explain. In the corporate business world, McDonalds has revolutionized the fast-food industry, and they’ve done it with four business dynamics: (1) quality, (2) service, (3) value, and (4) cleanliness. Any McDonalds you go into will have these four things working together.

This is also how some folks live Christianity! (1) They want to be a quality Christian, by doing things ‘by the book,’ (2) they try to provide some service in the church, (3) they want to be of value by giving money, and (4) they want to be clean in word and thought and deed. They want to look good. They want to impress God and other people. They want to ‘shine,’ and show themselves to be good Christians.

It’s not bad to do good! But this McDonalds illustration shows how we often confuse doing good with living in unity with God. This happens if our focus is not on the gospel of Jesus. If we are not gospel-focused, then our focus is us, someone else, or something else. The Bible says our focus should be on God, and all he has done — not on our McDonalds style of Christianity: quality, service, value, and cleanliness. “McChurchianity” isn’t REAL Christianity.

We should do good rather than bad, but this isn’t divine revelation. It’s just common sense. But our quality, service, value, and cleanliness does not define Christianity. The gospel says Christianity isn’t giving our best; rather it is receiving God’s best. It is not trying to be more like God.

That’s the same sin Eve was seduced by in the Garden of Eden. We’re seduced by the same sin when we try to live a type of McDonalds McChurchianity. If our goal is to be more like God, then we’re just living in the power of the fall. Like Eve, we are living with our eyes on us — on how we can be better. This is living a good life, and it is noble, but it’s not true Christianity. It is simply living a good, religious life.

Living in the gospel means we receive all the good things God has to give us (I Cor 2:12). Like manna, we should receive God’s good things every day. Then we simply share what we have been given with others. As Christians, all that any of us have that is worth anything at all, is the presence of God in us. Everything else is flesh. Gospel life is living in God, and then imparting his presence to others.

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