They Like the Church But Not Jesus?
Recently I read the book “The Like Jesus But Not the Church” by Dan Kimball. I enjoyed it and it gave some great thoughts and insight on the large number of people who are into Jesus but (for whatever reason) don’t trust the Church.
This got me to thinking…Is the opposite true?
Is it possible that there is a large number of people inside the Church who like the Church but not Jesus? Now, before you write me off as nuts, hear me out. Take The Well for example (to be fair I’ll pick on my church). We do have a great thing going. For example:
- We have a great community that really cares for each other (my family has felt the truth of this recently)
- We have a great weekly worship gathering with some amazing musicians (we have more good musicians than we know what to do with)
- I’ve been told the preaching isn’t terrible (who knows!)
- We host cool concerts and art shows (they really help us to get to know those outside our community)
- We have a really amazing looking space (take a look at some pictures)
- We serve great coffee (Shameless plug for One Village Coffee)
- We try to do our best to be socially conscious and care for the poor (Christians better be doing this, but even those who don’t know Jesus know this is a good thing)
Now, all this stuff is fine. In fact, I think all this stuff is good. But, if all that we were as a church was this, how easy would it be for someone to like the Church but not be so into Jesus?
You get what I am saying?
For those of us who have “cool churches” are we doing and saying enough to make sure people hear, learn and know about the radical, life-altering, provocative, revolutionary and mind blowing message of Jesus? Or, are we just happy that they like to show up on Sunday mornings. After all, that’s better than nothing… Even if your church isn’t perceived as “cool,” how about you?
If you think about it long enough, I think this is a cutting question. Not only for those of us who are pastors asking this of our churches…
But, I have to ask this of myself. Am I so in love with my community that it overshadows my love for Jesus? Of course, the answer is not to love your community less… the answer allow your community to help you learn to love Jesus more…
So what do you think?
(Now, as a side note, at The Well we never once started out saying “let’s be a cool church.” In fact, sometimes I hate that we are perceived that way because all we want to do is be a community that worships, loves and serves the living Messiah in a way that proclaims his hope to the world. Cool or not, who really cares!? I always say, you could take our building and art shows and music and everything and I still believe that we would still be the same at the core of who we are…)