Wednesday, July 11, 2012

The Price is Right?

In the same interview referenced a couple days ago, Drew Carey spoke of his current gig hosting “The Price is Right.” He says the atmosphere on that show compares to one other experience in his life: growing up in a Pentecostal church. There are two ways that can be taken, and neither of them speaks well to the state of churches today.

First, there is the disturbing realization that a lot of church—that community of believers sharing life and being Christ to the world—has become entertainment. No longer is it about community or God’s mission; it is a show. People think about church for an hour a week as a place to be entertained and refreshed. It is a carefully orchestrated atmosphere designed to fulfill people’s expectations, keep them coming, and keep them giving financially. It is about as good at giving people an emotional fix as a game show is, and it is about as relevant to the rest of people’s lives as one.

If that weren’t bad enough, you then begin to realize that even more church fails to even reach that level of impact. There are plenty of churches that are not shooting for entertainment, but they aren’t really shooting for anything. It is still an hour-a-week appointment instead of life sharing or mission, but it is a chore. People show up, not because they are drawn back but rather because they think it is demanded. They think attending a service is something God wants and they legalistically fulfill that expectation.

Church needs to return to the way things are when it is not about a building, programs, or personalities. It needs to be about community, about life shared during the week, and about changing the world outside the community with the most powerful story ever told.

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