Lately, I’ve been revisiting the concept of church.
I spent years while in graduate school thinking about the church, the structure of the church, the reasons for church, the benefits of church, the theology of church and ultimately a vision for church.
Like all things that you over think, I gradually turned my attention away from the subject.
What I’m realizing now is that there really aren’t a lot of good explanations out there for my generation as to why the church is important… or why go to church… or what God’s plan for church is according to scripture. The result is pretty simple. Without a compelling reason to commit to something (especially when that something is broken or messy), we don’t. Therefore, my generation is not committed to or committing to the local church.
I empathize with the decision and the emotion, but I also disagree with it.
The church is God’s “Plan A” and there is no “Plan B”. The church is what we have been given, and if it is broken we must fix it rather than leave it. (Just like husbands or wives should do their best to help rather than leave their spouse). If it is broken beyond repair then we need to start over and plant new churches and generate new movements. (Just as a failed marriage doesn’t mean that the concept or idea of marriage should be thrown away).
So what’s the biggest hurdle right now?? I don’t quite know. Maybe it’s different for every person. Maybe it’s different depending on the local culture and church options available. Maybe it’s the strange idealism and impatience of my generation. Maybe it’s as simple as church not being “cool” or attractive.
Maybe, however, it’s a trickle down resulting from the lack of sound and compelling teaching on the nature and role of the church in God’s program?? And maybe, just maybe, God is stirring some leaders in this generation to start new churches and generate new movements…
Anyway, “church” is back on the burner for me…