"I know your works... Because you are lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I am about to spit you out of my mouth." - Revelation 3:15-16
Just last year, he closed his sprawling 500-seat restaurant in Times Square.
WaPo surmises that it was, perhaps, the "most mocked restaurant in the country." Certainly Pete Wells' infamous 2012 review would point to its demise, excerpted here:
Somewhere within the yawning, three-level interior…is there a long refrigerated tunnel that servers have to pass through to make sure that the French fries, already limp and oil-sogged, are also served cold?
What accounts for the vast difference between the Donkey Sauce recipe you've published and…in your restaurant? And when we hear the words Donkey Sauce, which part of the donkey are we supposed to think about?
Poor Guy. One can imagine Wells and so many others rejecting dish after dish with a harshness that is difficult to…palate.
Poor church. Because one can imagine John of Patmos doing the same.
Was it really that bad? Did he have to skewer them with such memorable zingers? Or, was John (like Pete) just clear on what was at stake?
People come to us for nourishment, for satiation.
What are we serving?
Is our offering sweet? Has it been fired up for God and God's people? Or is it lukewarm?
Barely palatable is unpalatable, when it comes to church.
What's in our sauce? What part of the Body of Christ would come to mind when people think about our church?
May our reviews point us back to the one who kindles the fire.
Fiery God of burning bush, of tongues aflame: help us to feed your people in Jesus' name. Amen.
Kaji Douša is the Senior Pastor of The Park Avenue Christian Church, a congregation of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) and the United Church of Christ, in New York City.