If churches were football teams, the congregation would be the players, and the huddle would be regular in-church activities like weekly Sunday worship. (I guess that makes Jesus the coach, God the general manager, and the Holy Spirit the quarterback? Or something like that.) I was reminded how important that Sunday huddle is this week since… we couldn’t have worship because of snow and ice! No worship, no huddle. So I’ve been figuring out how to be my best self all week on the fly. Football teams can speed up their play if the clock’s ticking by skipping the huddle, but you only do that if necessary. You play better when you huddle and prepare.
Everybody wants strong muscles, right? Well, your physical muscles aren’t the only ones you have. People shouldn’t just exercise their physical muscles but also their intellectual, emotional, and definitely their spiritual muscles. Just like lifting weights, doing sit-ups, and going for runs make us physically stronger and fit, we should also monitor and exercise our faith…
I’m a creature of habit, so I really rely on my weekly schedule to help structure my work time, my family time, and the nightly time when I get to collapse after playing with my sons. Things like church, school, office, visits, and father-sons time help give my life a rhythm. I know when I’ll […]
One of the more popular laments these days is that the country/culture/society/people just aren’t as good as they used to be. There’s usually a line like, “People these days just don’t ________ like they used to.” One example among Christians is, “People don’t go to church like they used to.” Whether you think the way society has changed is good or bad, what isn’t debatable is that church attendance in America has indeed been declining drastically since the ’90s. Should that bother us? And if so, how?
A majority of workers in the US are burned out. Only 36% of employees feel like their work is meaningful, while only 25% “connect” to their company’s mission. Businesses can improve their stats by meeting four “core needs” of their employees: physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual. Spiritual? Yes! An employee’s spirituality is a significant factor in increasing both their health and commitment to their job. And that’s where churches can help people find more meaning in life and satisfaction in their jobs.
Everyone wants to be satisfied with their church-going experience. And there are a lot of things we can do to improve not just our church experience but the overall impact and warmth of our church for everybody who connects with it. But what if you didn’t want to be satisfied with your church?
What would you say if someone asked, “I get why you’re into ‘being spiritual’ and ‘helping people’ and everything, but why bother with Church? Do you really think you need it?” If churches are just places that organize service projects, have book clubs, host fun dinners, and offer support groups, and since you can find all that through other places, then why bother with church at all? Good question. (The short answer is: it helps you remember what you need to know.)
Folks who go to church all the time their whole life will be fluent in churchy lingo, but others won’t be, so we don’t want to use insider language they don’t understand, especially if it sends a wrong message. New perspectives are very helpful, because they force us not to use hollow language just by habit. Is there a better way we can talk about issues of faith? The main thing young adults don’t like is hollow clichés. So here is a helpful list (I love lists!) of “churchy phrases that are scaring off millennials.”
Last month we started thinking about why there has been a decline in American church attendance the last few decades. In the sermon last Sunday, we heard the words of Jesus–“The harvest is plentiful, but the workers are few” (Luke 10:2)–and we applied it to our society today: people are different now, so it’s like there’s a different kind of crop that needs harvesting. This new crop requires different harvesting methods, which the church hasn’t really learned yet.
One young adult Christian laments, “The most frustrating part of being a Millennial is that my church does not understand me.” Yikes! Is it even possible to understand them? (Hint: Yes! And we’re in a good position to do it.)
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