Sunday, June 06, 2010

Well, I have little doubt about it any more. The church in this country, is changing. One reason is that the general perception of Sundays is changing. For those who do attend "church" it is more about connecting and seeing friends, checking in with accountability, getting a rush from the worship team, or other things, than it is about really paying attention to the preaching, deliberately offering up awe and affection to the Lord. I have fended off this feeling for a long time. Now, I think this is the main interest of American Christians. At least the evangelical ones.

It isn't that we have apostasized from our core doctrines or abandoned our love of the Word of God. We just love ourselves more. That's my opinion, at the moment at least.

Ideally, I wish all Christians would do these things:

Commit to attending a church every week, even if things aren't ideal there. Make time for worship. He is worth it.
Be loyal to whatever church you go to, for as long as you can do so. And demonstrate that loyalty in many ways.
Read your Bibles every day.
Forgive your fellow church people heavily, and frequently.
Ask God to make you less about you and more about other people. Ask Him for this repeatedly.


Scribe of Light said...

Hmmm...I frequently see and fear this as well, particularly the "rush" given by a talented worship team. How is a musician meant to balance their God-designed talents in music with their often-unasked-for position of authority over the direction of focus. How does a team, preacher, church, focus on doing everything to the Glory of God as well as make sure people are looking at God and not at them? Or, is it not the leadership's fault? Can they be doing everything right, so to speak, and still fail to get people to look at God in reverence and not the guitarist in awe? In other words, if there's a line between service and performance, where is it? How do we avoid it?

Broken on the Rock said...

Good thoughts. Some Christian communities and traditions see the dangers and pitfalls in misfocus with such concern, that they eliminate the potential for distraction by disallowing anyone to play instruments or to sing solos. It is a touchy balance for a leader to lead, but for the people to not follow him/her, but look to the Lord. I think this is why much prayer is essential for preparation for worship.

Sandy said...

One help for us in this is having an open Lord's Supper / Communion time weekly. People offer songs to sing, read Scripture, pray, and also enjoy the silence around the table of bread and wine. No special f/x, dolby, lights and drums. No leader or directions. Just you and the bible and the Spirit and other believers. Then you see if you are a worshiper. This doesn't solve all the problems you mentioned but it certainly is a help and blessing to many. About 100 attend, but that is only a portion of a larger group that don't.