7 comments on “My Ideal Church

  1. Amen! Wow, what a relief to see your list today. I’m struggling with my local church and you write a list that looks very much like what I’d like to see!! One single addition, but probably fits under “Intentionally Equipping the Saints,” would be “Inviting Practical Exercise of Spiritual Gifts.”
    Too often we expect people to know and exercise their spiritual gifts without giving them opportunities to try some on to find out what they’ve got and time to figure out how to use them.
    Thanks for the lift!
    I hope you are blessed in your search.

  2. Jim,
    I say amen and amen. I have a funny story about number 6. The last church I served at before coming here went through a program that had us outline core beliefs and all of that. I got tabbed to preach the message about our core beliefs regarding worship. I was the youth guy and also led the praise and worship times, so it was a natural request and fit for me. In the midst of my sermon, I started talking about the performance mentality of worship, both on the part of the people leading and in many cases the persons in the seats as well. To illustrate my point, I walked to the back of the room and stood behind everyone and told them to keep their eyes forward. I explained that the person standing up there is not to be the focus. Our focus in worship is on God. I always wanted to try leading in worship from the “back of the room” instead of the front, but other than that short part of my sermon, I have never found another opportunity to do it.

  3. We actually have attended a worship service before called “In the Round”… very cool, casual worship. 🙂 Nice!

    It’s funny to read this this week. On Tuesday night I was talking with the worship team (I lead worship in my church) and I told them that I wanted them to back off their mics for part of worship… because I wanted us to worship CORPORATELY… in one voice…. without seven of us being “showcased”. They seemed to like the idea, and I think we’ll do more of it. Worship is not meant to be a performance… we are simply “lead worshippers”. I love that idea.

  4. #5 is dead on point. And in my experience, the “next wave of leaders” gap isn’t limited to church. It’s remains a foreign concept in many institutions across the land of Me, Me, Me.

    peace

  5. I think that I could have basically written this post myself! My husband and I are also looking for a church and are struggling with the task. your list is basically what we are looking for too. It seems rather hard to find though! We keep reminding ourselves that no church is perfect.

    Right now one of our big struggles is finding a church that doesn’t feel that it is necessary to sacrifice Biblical truth for cultural relevance. Hence my husband’s blog: Unrelevant (http://unrelevant.wordpress.com/) He has recently begun to blog about churches as we attempt to find the right fit for us.

  6. Jim,

    Ok… I agree with you a thousand percent and i could add some… like for instance:

    A church that teaches critical thinking skills among its people and to not fall for the okeedoke even if its from other maintstream or popular evangelical preachers. In other words, we may have democrats, republicans, and independents in the same congregation, but no one will make me pick based on false morally masked topics… they won’t say that because we are against abortion that we don’t have compassion for the living when they are poor…life may begin at conception but it doesn’t end at birth for those who can’t fend for themselves… so don’t stop Rhonda at the clinic if you won’t be there for her at the hospital when she had nothing to feed the kid….

    a church that is holistic in its thinking… I am going to blog this one day but isn’t it wild how when it come to technology we can send sattelites to outerspace, have billions of bits of information on a chip… all the while the foundation of such ingredients were here for thousands of years… we come into the knowledge of such things as time goes on… which is to say that the capacity of man to learn and increase happens over time… and YET when it comes to our thinking about the Creator of the universe we are literally CAVE people who think that God has basically said all there is to say on important contemporary issues etc. We are spiritual cave men and technological giants comparatively… and yet we believe the same God is the originator or technology… you dig me? Same ole messages, same interpretations handed down from old men of dominating cultures, sexist, racist, classist. You ever think about how primitive racism is for instance? Think about it.

    But don’t get me started… You hit it on the head and I guess thats why i am attracted to a lot of things you say. You have a like hunger that I can relate to… but you are no fool are are tired of folks asking you to be one for the sake of the team.

    Ha! The stories I could tell of my own experiences. Honestly I can see me visiting a church but not joining one for these reasons and all of the things you mentioned that I have yet to see.

    Peace

    we won’t condemn one sin while turning a blind eye to the other. We won’t cover up the issue of homosexuality

    but don’t get me started.

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