Thursday, 18 August 2011

Church - choices and consumerism!

It seems that choice, rights and all the hallmarks of the consumer world we inhabit shape what church is and how we do it (and select it too!).

We go to a church because we like the way they play music and yet in doing so ignore the quality of the teaching, the theological truths and the essential tenets. We swing from Anglican to Baptist because they have better coffee and by so doing move from paedobaptism to anabaptism. We move from Pentecostal to Anglican because of the teaching and suddenly we're into proper liturgy (should start a fight ;) )!

We make our consumer choices without realising the theological and spiritual statements we make.

We make decisions about what our churches should be - we decide that pews restrict the use and then struggle to move or do anything because of the stacked chairs (we always forget to have a room to store stuff!). We speak of open, fluid spaces, which allow us to do so much and then put the chairs out in the same way the pews were.

People outside dictate how our buildings should be (ask me about Putney some time) and others (within) fight to keep us in the nineteenth century whilst more seek to remove the (vital) organ and strangle the choir so they can have trite, naff, rainbow guitar strapped morons, "Making the church 'contemporary' and 'accessible'!"

Valid church is vital church that belongs to the universal Church. It doesn't exist to support our rights, tickle our ears, or do it the 'right' way. It doesn't look to bring people back but to take Christ out to those who are distant, often for the first time!

So - stop telling me what you want or need and start thinking about how you can use what you have where you are - and remember if you make your choice and leave for another happy home to be generous, after a it will be a blessing for some and a curse for others (and not always the way you might think!! ;) )



Revsimmy said...

What's this about Putney, Vic? :)

Paul Wilkinson said...

Your second paragraph is insightful. I don't know that I've ever heard of someone changing churches because as they were studying a particular scripture they became convinced as to a particular doctrine. It is, as you say, often coffee or music or...