Monday, January 30, 2006

Cancel Sunday Services?

I'm in the middle of a teaching series on the church (Church: It's Not What You Think it Is). It's fun for me because it's the culmination of 30 years of church experience. I've never had the chance to teach these things in depth and so I'm enjoying the opportunity. I'm excited to see the fruit it brings long term for us.

One of the things I'm pointing out is that most believers have a Sunday-only mentality about church. They approach church in a very independent way. I'm contrasting that with having a 24/7 mentality that is more corporate. But the thing that strikes me as odd is that I'm teaching this on Sunday. The "big-event" of the week for a church is the hour on Sunday but what I'm teaching is that Sunday shouldn't be that central. Catch the irony? If it wasn't for the big-event I wouldn't be able to reach as many as I do.

I thought that the best way to reinforce my teaching would be to cancel Sunday services for three months. That would definitely make the point but it would probably destroy the church too! We are too big and have too many new people to make that work. They wouldn't understand what we are doing and we'd just lose them. Besides, there is great value in corporate worship and teaching. I just want us to learn how to balance that out by developing relationships outside of Sunday.

But I like the thought! We need to do something to shake us up - to stop making our church experience all about us. We have to repent of the way we've made our faith a private affair and not a corporate one. We don't realize that one of the reasons that church leaves us cold is that it's so self-centered. We've made it that way because it's convenient in our fast-paced society. But a self-centered church experience is like drinking only leaves you wanting more.