I read an interesting article today by Tom Ehrich in the Indianapolis Star. He writes about churches that spend more time at Christmas whining over the people who aren’t there than they do considering how they can meet people where they are and introduce them to the gospel. Now there is a significant part of the article that I’m not comfortable with, mainly allowing our worship services to be primarily consumer driven, but I think the author makes some valid points, particularly about giving people substance rather than what we perceive to be pleasing and fun. You may want to take a look at it yourself. The follow quote was my favorite from the article.
Of all the possible roles to play, we seem to have chosen the least savory. We play the uncaring innkeeper: There’s no room for you here as you actually are. We play the Roman census-taker: Do it our way, or else. We play the shepherds’ employer: Stay out there in the cold, even though light is shining not far away.
I say stop the whining, and rev up the preaching. Let’s touch their hearts, not tickle their ears with clever Advent homilies about John the Baptist. Let’s love people, not berate them for spurning our treasured offerings.