So it seems to me... that every so many years, there is a new trend towards refining the church. A new author, a music group, a visionary pastor (etc.) gets an idea and puts it out there and people start going, "Hey YEAAA!!! I AM unhappy with the church!" And so a reformation of sorts kicks in. The target issues tend to be the same (it seems to me), i.e. the church has become stuffy, the church has become rules minded, the church has become too formal, the church has become too informal, the church has lost its sense of tradition, the church cares only about tradition, the church is too top-heavy in its authority, the church doesn't HAVE "kingdom" authority, the church is not edgy enough, the church is too edgy, etc.
And then usually the Cutting Edge Leaders (C.E.L.s) align themselves with Martin Luther or Martin Luther King or some well-known leader of years-gone-by, to validate their vision for a purer church, a more spiritual church, a cleaner church, etc.
Frankly, I am worn out by the many cycles of refinement that the church seems to be destined to endure. Doesn't anyone just say any more, "I love the church?" Or, "I like to be with Christians of kindred spirit?" Or, "I thank God for the good things the church does, and I give God all the credit?" Lately, the book The Naked Church has come into vogue again. I read the book and while Jacobsen's writing captures some true points it tires me out to read AGAIN how "the church fails" and "isn't interested in real intimacy with God." Books like this all too often seem generated from the circus that is the church scene on the West Coast. I can only speak for the scene in the Northeast--but the churches here are doing the best they can to stay alive, to be Spirit-filled, and to reach our region with the Gospel. They don't need to be beat up again. They need encouragement and support.