I’ve found in my 35 years of ministry that spiritual conversations with the terminally ill never seem to focus on religiosity. Issues that we often assume are absolutely necessary to the Christian debate no longer appear to matter as those individuals and their families face their last days. They just want to talk about what it will be like to see Jesus.
Those hot topics such as: Calvinism vs. Arminianism; Republican vs. Democrat; Complementarianism vs. Egalitarianism; Traditional vs. Contemporary; Conservative vs. Moderate; Mega-Church vs. Micro-Church; Connectional vs. Missional; and even Organ vs. Guitar are no longer relevant conversations. They just want to talk about what it will be like to see Jesus.
I know this is an overly simplistic illustration and solution for such a complex subject, but the Church is losing ground as we spend the majority of our time debating issues that in the end won’t really matter. I understand completely the value and even necessity of healthy biblical, theological and doctrinal debate. But when that debate takes precedence over talking about what it will be like to see Jesus, we will continue losing ground by missing those fleeting opportunities for meaningful conversations with a terminal world.