Whenever people talk about the demise of the Church – how churches are losing young people, how only the elderly, and the children are attending church, I wonder if it’s about how we’re approaching young people, or how we’re focusing too much on the laws and not grace, or how we’re focusing too much on grace and not the rules.
So I’ve been thinking, what kind of church would I be excited to attend and to invite friends…
1. A church that lets you come as you are: Not everyone has the best clothes, and even those with the best clothes may not want to wear it all the time. Sometimes I have a new outfit I want to show off in church, but sometimes I just want to put on a pair of jeans, put my hair in a ponytail, wear some flats and just come to church. Instead of being discouraged from going because I don’t have a long skirt, and head covering.
2. Rules based on love: we all need rules. This new age thing that talks about do what feels good is not biblical. Just because it feels good, doesn’t make it right. Just because it feels right doesn’t make it right. But then again, we shouldn’t be so strict about the rules that we miss out on the heart.
3. A place where one can be real, and talk about real issues: My generation inherited a messed up world. A world full of terror, chaos, and tragedy. We have so many questions, but no trusted advisors. The family is falling apart, education is lacking, sexual deviances are now the norm. We need a safe place to ask the real questions.
4. Finding Purpose: Many of us were told to go to school, find jobs, and find purpose there. Our Christian lives were separated from our working lives, and now we find that we haven’t found fulfillment or purpose. We need guidance and support, and this is where the church can help to advise, reform, and encourage.
5. Family or good friends AKA community: The church is an excellent place to create friendships that cut across tribes, races, backgrounds, class etc. and to create a new family. A family where we feel loved and respected. A family where we can be honest and not have to worry of others becoming jealous, or disclosing our secrets.
6. Safe place: The church can be our safe place. Where we run to whenever we need anything – physical, mental, spiritual etc.
I’m sure there are many more things that would help the Church meet the needs of future leaders, but those are my thoughts so far.
What would you add to it?