Stop Trying To Make Church “Cool”
It’s the hot conversation among church administration – How do we fill the pews? Millenials aren’t attending. Contemporary worship, special effects, edgy church branding or… trendy coffee, isn’t working. It’s time we restore old school values in church.
So, what’s the draw to church? Should it be catering to current social culture or rather focusing on the Gospel? It’s not a boutique-packaged story. It’s the story of overwhelming love wrapped up in the truth of human-ness. Christ came, He died, He rose again – and that didn’t involve fog machines. The disciples were broken, just like us. How do we restore old school values to the church and return our focus to Christ’s story?
Here’s a few ideas for why we should reevaluate how we do church.
1. Restore Old School Values By Not Making Songs “Contemporary”
Contemporary music can mean a stronger focus on individual performance rather than group worship as a whole. New music should not be forgotten as it is necessary to express current burdens of the culture in song, but they should be congregation-ready and free of commercial trappings.
2. Connect With Communities Of All Ages
Everyone needs a mentor. It’s time to stop breaking up the church into groups by age and gender and start working together as a community – young and old, male and female.
3. Restoring Old School Values To Church By Including Children In Corporate Worship
We have “Children’s Church” and “Youth Church” which have fortified the concept of “my church” vs. “your church” within families. Let’s get back to interacting with each other and sharing our strengths (and weaknesses). The church is a great environment to learn how to sit still, use your listening skills, and connect with the same God that your parents worship.
“I grew up in a church, back in the sixties, that only sang hymns…then came the contemporary praise movement in the seventies and I thought wow this is better than the old hymns. And we all know the rest of the story. I have an eight year old daughter who will never know the hymns like I do. And to be honest that infuriates me.” – Brian (credit: Patheos.com/JonathanAlgner)
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4. Worship Doesn’t Have To Compromise Your Identity
Most people do not attend church to be entertained. They are there because they are feeling broken, lonely or lost. Marketing isn’t going to grab the younger generations attention any more than a special-effects heavy worship service will. Worship should not detract from a powerful, holy God. It should stand the test of time. When the lights, effects, and frills are gone – worship should remain a timeless connection to our past, present and future in the faith.
5. Restore Old School Values And Focus On What Will Not Change
Church shouldn’t be fake. It’s not about entertainment, comfort, or fads. Church should be a place to bring your joys and your sorrows and connect with others who want to find God and be loved. Fog machines, coffee, and specialty groups will never meet those needs the way the core truths will. Let’s focus on what will not change: God, His Word, and our need to love each other.