Above Reproach


We just had a great membership class at both Southbrook Monroe and Southbrook Weddington. And once again, most of the folks were fired up about joining the team to help us fulfill the mission that God has given us to reach those who are far from God. But it doesn’t take long for the class participants to realize that we are very serious and extremely purposeful about our mission as a church.

That’s why we have them commit to a covenant.

For some people that’s a deal breaker.

For us it’s a deal breaker when they won’t.

If you want to be a part of the team in any deeply impactful way, we want to know who can be counted on.

  • Every team has a roaster.
  • Every school has an enrollment.
  • Every army has an enlistment.

It tells you who can be counted on.

But there’s also a sort of second level filter that comes up at nearly every class. And it’s a false filter that people place upon themselves—a hoop God isn’t asking us to jump through.

I call it the problem of perfection. And it never fails to rear it’s deceptive head at each and every class.


And it never enters unannounced either. I can always tell it’s there when one or two (or more) folks sort of hang back from the others like something is bothering them and they need to talk. When they get the courage to approach it will usually go something like this:


  • “Pastor Rob? I don’t know if I can join because of that part where it says I need to live a godly life. I just don’t think I’m godly enough?”
  • Or. “Pastor Rob? I can’t tithe because I’m in too much debt. I mean I could tithe some, but I want to tithe 10 percent and just don’t see how I can?”
  • “I was a part of a couple small groups at my former church and it didn’t work out so I don’t know if I can do it this go round…”


And on and on it goes. But you know what they are really saying?


They are saying they don’t think they can be PERFECT. And since they can’t be PERFECT why bother at all?


But God doesn’t expect perfection and neither do we. God doesn’t want our fruitless efforts. He knows we aren’t going to be perfect. He wants our hearts and He wants us to hold tightly to His hand and let Him refine us into His image.


BTW, that’s a process that starts here on this planet but it won’t achieve perfection until we see Jesus one day face to face.


So, give Him your heart and quit trying to earn it. Christ followers aren’t perfect but hopefully they are above reproach.