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Thursday, November 6, 2008

XVII. Problems of the Church

Here are the results from last months poll: How do you view the Church today?
  • It is more about show and entertainment (58%)
  • The programs are shallow and have no real substance (58%)
  • The leadership is not concerned with the right issues (41%)
  • No one knows what the Church is supposed to be like (25%)
  • It seems like it has no compassion (16%)
  • It has lost all tradition and meaning (8%)
  • It is too much involved with the culture (8%)
  • There aren't enough mature Christians in the WORD (8%)
  • The Church is fine and better than ever (0%)
Let's take the top two. Fifty eight percent said both were problems of the Church. It seems like people who are in the Church are tired of programs that seem to be just for show. Maybe too many times the Church is focusing on its reputation than its character. The difference between these two things is reputation is what people think of you on the surface. You react to the way you are perceived. Character is about what you do even though no one else is around. If your character is good then who cares about your reputation. Many churches get stuck on what society thinks of them. Many churches are afraid of offending people. They tend to bend when it comes to standing up to the culture. What they fail to see is that they break when the culture actually takes over.

The next two may go hand in hand as well. Maybe no one knows what the Church is supposed to be anymore because the leadership doesn't even know. The leadership isn't concerned with the right issues. Some focus on money. Some focus on numbers. Some focus on reputation. Real leadership knows what they are doing. Real leadership makes it known to the people what they are doing. Real leadership follows through with the right ideas. Real leadership foresees possibilities of problems and deals with them before it happens. It has been said that an organization is only as strong as its leadership. First of all, the Church is not an organization. It is an organism. A live, breathing, heart-beating organism. It is not a place full of paperwork created by Robert's rules of order.

It was nice to hear that many people don't think the Church has lost its compassion. However, maybe this is an area though we need to stress more. Maybe the Church is compassionate. But are they truly showing it? This might be one of the biggest failures of the Church today; following through on its compassion. Get out of the pew. Go into the world (even those "dark city" places...sarcasm...) and work with them. The Church isn't just for the suburbs.

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