In the book Total Church the author describes how “church” can often operate like a “club”.
“But somehow so much of their life together as a church was inaccessible and irrelevant to those around”.Total Church by Tim Chester
I remember feeling this all through out my life. That we would meet on Sunday while the world around us continued on. We were there in our little building doing all the things that churches in America do. It really did feel like we were irrelevant and inaccessible to the world when everything I was reading in the Bible and all the desires I felt were to do the opposite. I could not put it into words then, in fact I could not really put it into words until recently.
It’s odd that we are told to go and disciple people. We are told to go and live life with people. Our model is Jesus and he went out and shared in the suffering and joys of people. He loved them genuinely. Yet as a majority, we do not do this. Jesus did not open a building up and create programs that would draw people in. Not that churches cannot be in a building and that buildings are inherently a bad thing. But I do strongly believe that our life together should look different. It should not be inaccessible or irrelevant. Our life together should include and actually be primarily with those that don’t yet believe or are brand new to the faith and growing. A building full of believers does start to look like a club and clubs are most often exclusive, that’s why they exist. Not always, but usually.
Life together. I think that’s something that is missing in general. A few hours on Sunday is not life together. Life together would be a great first step. The next one would be life together doing what we were called to do, to be fulfilling our primary mission. And that’s loving on people and pointing them to our hero, our savior, the reason we all live and breath.
In other words it starts with you and me being both accessible and relevant.