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Omaha, Nebraska, United States
I am more and more convinced that most congregations die from a staggering lack of imagination. Let's change that. Drop me a line on email or leave a comment if you have thoughts on God, Jesus, congregations, the church or whatever.... I look forward to our conversations.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Boring church

As a kid I never minded going to church (which was good because my mom and grandmother were both church secretaries, so it's not like it was optional), but I knew all (and I mean all) of my friends thought it was "boring." And I wandered through years of ministry, always working with youth at some point, I heard that statement a lot. Church is boring.

But look at what your general teenager thinks is boring: everything that doesn't immediately relate to them. Church, school, whatever has the potential to be boring because youth are not sure how it fits into their identity...and church suffers because it is never about the kid...church is never about any of us, young or old, church is always about God, and what God does in the world. At some level everyone should be frustrated with going to church. I don't care if you're 7 or 70, at some point if it's not boring, it's probably not about God, and therefore it's probably not church. Boredom in church simply means God's telling you again what you already know, even if you haven't acted upon that knowledge recently.

Christianity is a fairly simple religion: it's about your relationship to God (or for the more progressive amongst my readers--the great mystery), and if you don't care about that relationship it is bound to be boring to be in a place that does nothing but try to encourage that relationship. For years I thought my response to "Church is boring" was to try and make it "EXCITING!" But I was wrong...

The response to "Church is boring" is to ask why you are bored with your relationship to God? Why does hearing about God's love bore you? Why does listening to music that celebrates that love bore you? Why does hearing stories about the love of God bore you? Why does being told you are loved by God bore you?

So if you are at church and it is boring, ask why? Ask it of your pastors why they look so bored? Don't they love God anymore either? Ask it of the kids...the parents...the senior adults...In fact, go be bored by church and then ask yourself why love is not enough for you? I bet from then on you won't have time to be bored anymore.

May your tables be full and your conversations be true.

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