This is a question that crosses the mind of many a Christian at some point… you may have had a tough experience with a particular local church and have your foot halfway out the door… but take time to watch this episode of Questioning Christianity. It looks at the issue in an insightful way and you may be surprised by the answers!
Author/ speaker, Krish Kandiah is the host of this episode and the panel includes Andy Flannagan, Tiffany Buhler, Luke Taylor and Stephen Sutton. Each is involved in some form of ministry and has something dynamic to share.
Krish starts things off by quoting some alarming statistics from a recent survey on church attendance. Decreasing numbers of congregants does seem to be a worrying trend and he asks how this can be turned around. “Can we do church in a different way?” he asks.
Tiffany thinks so. As event director for David’s Tent she has helped introduce a whole other style of ‘Church’ to the next generation showing that church doesn’t have to be traditional!
Baptist minister, Stephen Sutton shares how you immediately have brothers and sisters when you become a Christian and how he finds it strange that a believer wouldn’t want to interact with them. He reminds us that taking time to find our place within God’s family and give of ourselves for the greater good of the Church isn’t boring but an exciting adventure of discovery. And the church, after all, is made up of people, it’s not just a building.
Singer/Songwriter, Andy Flanagan points out that we’ve become such a consumerist society that we often approach our faith with the mindset of a consumer and ask “What can I get out of this, instead of what can I give to this?” That’s so true. Sadly it’s a reflection of society as a whole. Unfortunately, it’s often the case that everything is about ‘me’ and whats in it for me? But that’s not what the Gospel is about and the panel grapples with this in an honest way.
Can I just do Church online?
This is another question believers often ask today, as the digital age gives us new opportunities. While watching Christian TV and church online can be highly beneficial we can’t ignore the importance of social interaction as we come together as believers.
“Being part of the Body of Christ means being a part of a community of believers, growing together, finding out what our giftings are, learning from one another, sharing the journey together and worshipping together,” says Andy, “Christianity isn’t a solo mission!”
Luke Taylor of New Life Church uses a sporting analogy to agree. “Church is like the game of cricket. When you are playing it’s great but it’s not a great spectator sport,” he says. “You have to be involved. You can’t hug someone online” he says and he’s right!
Initially, when anyone becomes a new believer it’s vital that you’re around other believers. Learning online isn’t’ the same as relating to other believers and discovering where you fit and how you can use your gifting is to best serve God’s family.
Church isn’t boring, but an exciting adventure of discovery. So if you find yourself bored at church, start looking for somewhere to serve!
As we mature and learn what gifts we have, often acknowledged by others in the Church, we can then be asking how to serve? Again you can’t do this at home alone, Christianity is a community, a gathering together of like-minded souls worshipping the one true God and seeking to bring His Kingdom here on earth.
So, if you find yourself bored at church, start looking for somewhere to serve. Serving shifts your focus off your needs and onto the needs of the wider community. Those of us who have served in a variety of ways can testify you won’t have time to be bored. You will have time to reflect on how fulfilled your life has become!