I was reading an article on the internet that hit me like a ton of bricks. You know in today’s world, we have so many different sources to blame for all our problems. But, I think it’s a little closer than that.
John Pavlovitz wrote the article called “Dear Church, here’s why people are really leaving you”
It actually scared me a bit, because it certainly gets right down to the nitty gritty. Pavlovitz lists five reasons for the problems of the Church.
- Your Sunday productions have worn thin.
- You speak in a foreign language.
- Your vision can’t see beyond your building.
- You choose lousy battles.
- Your love doesn’t look like love.
Without plagiarizing his whole article, let me touch on some of the major points from his five reasons:
- We are more interested in putting on these glitzy productions than preaching the hard truths of the bible. People often can’t remember what the sermon was about before they get home from church.
- The second reason I don’t agree with totally, but I know where he is going. My problem is I still like the King James Version of the Bible. But I can understand that the kids of this century struggle with the language, but they miss the sheer poetry of the old text.
- Your outreach programs don’t go outside the comfort zone of your stewardship. Cover your whole region (neighborhood), without concern for their race, color, creed of social status (read that as income levels).
- Its been said you have to know how to pick your battles, but I am not so sure. The church needs to take on all battles against the church; and the congregations need to get on-board for those fights.
- If a visitor comes to your church it is the job of any member to show that visitor some love, introduce him/her to the preacher or a council member so that he/she feels welcome. By ignoring anyone that is new, you are not sharing Gods love. Here’s a song that tells what is like to be ignored or shunned because that person doesn’t strike you as someone you would like to see in your little church. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kQjRxdMEGds.
You see, the problems in the church is more than just the preacher or the Sunday school teachers, or the office staff; rather it’s the job of each Christian to make their church a place where a stranger can walk in and know they will be welcomed, because they are in God’s house.
Mumbles says, welcome all as you would wish to be welcomed, and spread the love of Jesus to all. It’s the right thing to do.
By the way, if you are offended by this article, you are already doing it right and don’t like someone telling how to run their church, or you’re just not paying attention.
God’s peace to you and all who come to your door.