Five POSITIVE ideas...
I heard from a regular reader the other day. In a very loving tone he said: "All you do is bitch and moan, bitch and moan, bitch and moan".
I know, I know. Well, this blog is the outlet for my evangelically incorrect rants - so you're right. My readers tend to get the brunt of my criticism. But, I understand where my reader is coming from, and I've mulled it over. I'm going to start snapping myself with my WWJD bracelet when I start getting too critical a spirit and remind myself to look for solutions as well as problems.
I'm turning over a new fig-leaf (don't peek - and if you do - don't laugh). Here are a couple of positive ideas for our local Evangelical churches:
- Instead of thronging to the church's coffee bar - flood the Starbucks or coffee shop down the street an hour before church each week. Tip the baristas well. Make them wonder what the deal is. Create a buzz (caffeinated or not). What a great opportunity to witness. Isn't that what we're supposed to be doing?
- Reach out to the local artist community. Turn your lobby into a gallery. Display works. Have a reception for the artists. Interview them and love them. The church might learn that creativity is a part of Christ-like-ness and the artists might find that creativity is rooted Christ, the creator.
- Better yet, make a mission of thronging to a local gallery opening, community theater show, coffee house concert. Instead of trying to compete from inside the church walls, commission believers to congregate and co-mingle outside the church walls. Again, wasn't this Jesus' intent when he said, "go"?
- Produce a play. It doesn't have to be a tacky, smarmy Christian play. It could be a good play about relationships - community - or a social issue. Use it as a springboard for discussions and conversation - an entre to a message about Jesus' response.
- Instead of building a larger, more expensive Evangelical fortress, use resources to build up the community. Sponsor a little league team (and provide them with treats after each game), help build a community center, work with the local government to take care of needy families, offer an army of volunteers to clean up after the local parade or community festival. I think that's what Jesus had in mind when he called us to be light and "a city on a hill".
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