How can you tell if your church doesn’t understand it’s mission?
Sometimes the signs are pretty obvious that the church really doesn’t want to reach out and love others. But other times, we just don’t recognize the attitudes and behaviors which indicate a failure of our mission to be Jesus to the world.
Here are ten things you might hear in a Sunday service which will clue you in that your church leadership fails to grasp our mission to enter the dark and dangerous places of this world with the Gospel of the Kingdom or the fact the church is something we are, not something we attend.
(Note: In my first church, I said almost all ten at one time or another.)
- At the beginning of the service: “Well, let’s go ahead and get started. Hopefully more people will show up. Let’s begin by praying for those who are home sick or still on their way.”
- At the beginning of the service: “I guess the bad weather outside is keeping people at home.”
- At the beginning of the service: “I guess people are taking advantage of the nice weather outside and going to the lake.”
- During the prayer time: “Father, we pray that you would bring the people of our community to Jesus and help them to believe the gospel.” (Churches generally pray about this more than they do it.)
- During the opening prayer: “God, we invite you into our presence today.”
- At the beginning of the prayer time, you hear “Father, we come into your presence today…” (What? Is He only in church?)
- During the call to worship, there is an invitation to “leave your worldly cares behind.”
- During the opening welcome, you are told that “This is a safe place for you and your family.”
- During the opening welcome, you are invited to “Relax and enjoy your time. Get your batteries recharged.”
- In the announcements, you learn that there is a budget windfall, and to make the church more attractive to the community the board is trying to decide between repaving the parking lot or repainting the building.
There are dozens of others. Feel free to add to the list by leaving a comment below.
What if this is a weekly part of the bulletin “This is a safe place for you and your family”? That’s real trouble Jeremy
Jeremy Myers says
That’s a great one! Church was never meant to be “safe”!!
J.J. Valenzuela says
CD’s of the service (sermon) are in the back for $3
As church attendance slides, the people who still attend wonder why, but don’t know those who left, and those who don’t come when invited, well enough to ask and get an honest answer. So we speculate. “They went to the lake.” “No one is interested in the things of God any more.” (Assuming those of us who attend are.) There is a significant disconnect that those left behind don’t grasp, and sometimes, dare I say do not want to grasp.
Clive Clifton says
1 Thessalonians 5 v14. Are we not to be encouragers of the weak and be patient. Colossians 3 v16. Are we not told to share what we think we know in love.
Are we not to be bridge builders, not a demolishen team. When we dish the dirt, do we do it in love or do we do it to make ourselves feel powerful as we make a judgement over others.
if we don’t get our own way in Church, do we stay and act graceiously, or leave in an unrighteous manner.
When we point the finger of accusation are there not three fingers pointing back at ourselves.
The Beetles sang “love, love, love very biblical as a word said three times was meant to be very important.
When a man is down, do we put the boot in or pick him up and tend to his wounds.
In love, Clive X X X
Nirman Pradhan says
My Church does not have all the signs, but it does have some signs. Our Pastors always need to ask our believers to turn off their cell phones or not to make noise before preaching.