Got your attention didn’t it? Wow…this was an actual search posted to Google just a few days ago. Now I don’t know this particular person but I think we all know someone just like him/her.
My first thoughts upon seeing this Google search were;
What was it that made them feel that everything they heard was crap?
What did they hear?
What did they see?
Where they not engaged?
Was it legalistic?
Was it weak, un-foundational?
The modern generation, for the most part, has a hard time with church. Why? Relevancy!
Now don’t start typing a scathing response about the “relevancy of the gospel”. THAT IS NOT WHAT I AM TALKING ABOUT! The gospel is, was, and always will be relevant.
That’s right, I’m coming back to presenting a very relevant gospel, in a relevant way, to a new generation of largely un-churched or de-churched people. These people are looking for answers to their spiritual questions, and a large portion are finding their “answers” in places other than church.*
I was told a story just yesterday, about a man who came to our church, fresh from a five year stint in prison. He said that about 7 or 8 years ago, he had pretty much lost it all. He was at rock bottom, looking for answers, and knew he needed to get right with God. He rode his bicycle 15 miles to go to church. Now…pay close attention…he couldn’t carry his bible with him because he had no place to carry it on his bike. Upon arriving to church, he sat in the back and listened intently to the music, and testimonies. Then, it was time for the preacher to do his thing. Preacher steps up and says, “For all of you REAL Christians who brought your bibles today, lean over and share your bibles with the OTHER people”. This infuriated the man. He thought, “How many of you REAL Christians rode your bicycles 15 miles to go to church today?”
That was the last time he stepped foot in a church until this past Sunday.
God had been dealing with this man for several months. He was looking for answers and went to the place where he thought he could get them. All it took was one sentence that took about 5 seconds to say to negate everything that God had been doing in this man for months. A short time later, the man is in prison and the rest is history.
Thankfully the man heard God calling him again. This time he found the answer he was looking for, and he gave his heart to Christ.
Now we don’t claim to have the best church around, although we like to think we do things pretty well. One thing that I can say about our church is, we don’t care what you look like, where you come from, or how much money you make. We are going to do our best to make you feel welcome here.
We have people from all walks of life here. From bikers to bankers, Catholics, Baptists, Methodists, Pentecostals and every where in between, all being connected into a loving relationship with Jesus Christ.
We always strive to be relevant in everything we do. From the music, to the videos, the announcements, to the sermon, everything is presented in a way that meets people right where they are.
We try to break down the barriers, misconceptions, and preconceived notions of what church is.
Our mission as a church: “Connecting People to Christ, Equipping Them for Growth and Ministry”.
The above story is a prime example of how presenting a relevant gospel, in a relevant way, and not sticking your foot in your mouth, can and does make a huge difference to someone who is looking for answers.
Here is something to think about:
* Is the U.S. losing its Protestant majority?
From 1972 to 1993, the General Social Survey of the National Opinion Research Center found that Protestants constituted about 63% of the population. This declined to 52% in 2002. Protestants are expected to slip to a minority position between 2004 and 2006.
(“Study finds number of Protestants is falling,” Houston Chronicle, 2004-JUL-21. Posted on the Free Republic bulletin board at: http://www.freerepublic.com/)
True or False?