Well, that was ironic.
Last week I wrote a post, Six Church-Insider Issues I Don't Care About Any More. It resulted in more readers than any previous week this blog has ever had.
Apparently, being passionately apathetic is contagious.
As promised, today's post has a second list of issues. These are about how the church interacts with the culture.
When I say I don’t care about these issues, I mean it. I don’t think they're bad. I'm not upset. If your church does them, fine. I don’t want to take a sledgehammer to them. I’ve just shrugged them off due to apathy.
1. I Don't Care About Being Relevant
It’s better to be relevant than stale.
Our society is changing faster than ever. And that speed is increasing. So it makes sense for church leaders to ask “how do I communicate timeless truths in relevant ways?”
But being relevant isn’t enough.
Being relevant is more about following than leading. Relevant churches are following cultural trends slightly ahead of other followers. They’ve tapped into what the culture wants and they’re leveraging that knowledge to present the gospel in a way people can hear. That's way better than not knowing how to talk to the culture at all. But it's not enough.
As I stated in Why The Church Needs Artists More than Managers Right Now, “We need church leaders who do more than tap into the latest craze.”
When it comes to our culture, I don’t want to follow. I want the church to be better than relevant. I want us to lead.
2. I Don't Care What Millennials Want
Or boomers. Or builders. Or whatever the next generation will be called.
Sure, it’s important to understand how different age groups hear and process information. Millennials relate, give and commit very differently than their parents did. I’ve written about this before and I will again.
But catering to any demographic group gets dangerous. Fast. It becomes very easy to spend more time and energy asking what millennials want (or what the seniors in our financial base want) than what Jesus wants.
Jesus was the most forward-looking, trend-busting, tradition-breaking, paradigm-shifting person who ever lived.
He understood people and met them right where they were. Without a whiff of trying to be relevant or catering to any demographic.
I want to follow Jesus’ example and know people as individuals, not as members of a demographic group.