How to Not Change the Church

Relevant magazine has another good article today on ‘How Not to Change the Church‘ that’s worth reading. It’s a topic I’ve addressed before multiple times (here, here, and here). The basic idea in the article is that complaining won’t change anything in the church, but actively doing things can and will change the church. Do you wish they’d do something differently? Then stop complaining and change it. The article says it well:

And the onus is on us to keep taking steps toward Jesus and His people on a daily basis—through prayer, scripture, community and evangelism. We need one another to be the Church, and we need lots of different people around us to remember that it can look many different ways.

So go do something about your unhappiness with church. Get plugged in a start seeing change occur, both in you and around you.

Why Do I Go to Church?

Everyone’s heard the statistics, a majority of the students in our churches will end up abandoning the church once they leave the home (18-20) and then somehow stumble back into the church in their 30s, seemingly without missing anything the church has done. I know many people who view church as not much more than a club for them to be members at, and it looks good to the people around you to go to church. Unfortunately, this is a profound misunderstanding of the church! So why do I, as a 24 year old single male go to church, besides the fact that it’s my job?

  • I really enjoy going to church. I don’t know of any other place where I can interact with people ranging in age from infants to late 80s. Most of these people aren’t those that I would generally choose to spend a great deal of time with, but because of Christ in both of our lives, we have Him in common! It’s a joy to get down on a knee and hear about a 2 year olds new bike helmet, and then turn the corner and get a hug from an 80 year old woman who told me she was praying for me this week.
  • We, as a congregation, reflect God’s purpose for his people. I’m reading ‘Doxology & Theology‘ which says, “Through the work of worship we “become something corporate.” We become the body of Christ, we become the bride of the King” (125). This flies in stark contrast to our individualistic American society where we are so focused on ourselves that we have trouble seeing anyone else around us.
  • I’m going to be spending eternity with Christ’s bride, the church. I need to learn how to love the people in my church who are different from me, because, as was just said, we together make up the body of Christ. I need to spend time with those I don’t always see eye to eye with in order to grow in my areas of weakness.
  • Last, but most certainly not least, is because the Bible commands me to go to church. Hebrews 10:25 says, “do not neglect meeting together, as is the habit of some.” This verse could have been written to many people today! We are commanded to meet together because together we make of the body of Christ.

For me, going to church has never been an option, and I haven’t always gone joyfully, but through God’s grace, I’ve learned to enjoy the imperfect church we have on earth. Why do you go to church? What are some of the excuses you’ve heard for why people have given up on the church?