I was reading about how more and more people are “done with church” but not done with faith. They find community and purpose and spiritual connection in other places and groups. The traditional church doesn’t appeal to a lot of younger people. I understand that. I don’t criticize it. For me, it’s one form that a life of faith has taken that may have run its course and is being replaced with something else. That’s OK with me, except for the fact that I earn my living as a pastor in a traditional church. Talk about a conflict of interest!
What bothers me most is hearing church people talk about their goal being to “get people into the church,” as if the point were not giving or service or love, but meeting the budget and propping up the old ways. All the research and surveys show that people want relationship, meaning and service, not belonging to an institution.
Dying is easy. Facing the death of what you have loved – not so much. There’s no way around it, though. People will find what gives them life. Our goal as the church is to offer life to others, not to try to preserve our own. Yes, I know. That’s what Jesus said. Those who lose their lives will find them. How easily we forget.