They were talking about their church in the grocery-store (at the cafe, at the post-office, on the sidewalk - you know how we are). They were bragging about the building (its antiquity, its decor, its beauty, its "glory" - you know how we are). But then a Stranger spoke:
"All that you praise is fleeting, and will one day it will all fall."
Now, the church was a dear treasure to them, and in fear they begged the Stranger for more details: "How can this be?" "When will this be?" What of our investments?" "What of our improvements?"
"Many will claim to know when you will have to close your doors, and warn you of impending doom - do not give your ear to these false prophets. You will see horrible wars and atrocities on the news, and be tempted to see approaching Armageddon. Great division will form among people, and you will be tempted to see rapture and end-time. The environment will collapse, and you will be tempted to despair. The World will attack you of the Body because it can not harm the Head - this is not a punishment but an opportunity! You will then talk about greater things than upholstery, carpeting, and drapes. You will testify!
"But beware of locking-in your testimony in advance. You must make room room for the Spirit to act through you. At the proper time in the proper place, words and concepts will come to you that no earthly or demonic force can stand before. Yes, other members of your church will betray you, and friends and family will abandon you, and you will be hated because they hate me; but, you will be sanctified as you abide.
"Though the building will fail and your church will fall, the Church will endure and be perfected."
(from Luke 21)