November 19, 2007

More On The Seismic Activity

David Fitch blogs the latest piece on this story that I wrote about a few weeks ago.

You really need to read it, as I think it is extremely insightful. The last paragraph is what struck me:

One more question for REVEAL. If the people who are leaving Willow Creek are the mature Christians, could this mean Willow's role was never more than a good old-fashioned evangelistic organization? It was never meant to be church. For one thing is true, I see more and more Christian leaving large mega churches seeking missional community. Is there anything wrong with that? Could this be Willow's role in the renewal of the church?

I've had thoughts along this line for a long time. In my tenure at Upward, I was able to sit down and talk with small churches and mega-churches alike and one thing almost always presented itself. The bigger the church got, the more it trended towards Sunday morning being a performance, and the church being a machine when it came to "evangelism".

But the one thing that those large church staffs always told me was that the back door was growing larger and larger. Sure they were bringing people in the front door, but they were also seeing people leave at alarming rates. And it made sense. Because almost all of their efforts, even their mission statements, were largely aimed at the front door, not the family already in the house.

And I have a theory why.

Because walking people through the stages of spiritual formation is hard work, time consuming, painful, messy, and taxing. And we would rather have a good show they dig in and do real work. Style is always easier than substance. Flair is always more expedient than labor.

But it's funny that Jesus said the field was white unto harvest, but the "laborers" were few. A lot of people want to be in show-business, but few people want to be a farmer. One gets you lots of fans. One just makes you work and sweat.

(HT: Jared)

No comments: