Fast forward to today where the Christian movement in America is painted in a vast array of shades from apathetic to consuming. Faith in Christ has always been at its best in people as a movement rather than as an institution. Recently I had a chance to read a few articles by George Barna and David Kinnaman while I was flying to a conference. I begin to notice two common themes.
Interestingly enough those themes were germane to both those who were leaving the church and those who were sticking. The difference maker were these two things: meaningful relationships and cultural discernment. It seems where people of any age, stage, ethnicity or political preference find meaningful relationships and cultural discernment they stick and are eager to discover more about Christ and His life for them.
Meaningful relationships occur when we experience authenticity and elasticity in thought and conversation with others. Those bridges enable meaningful faith conversations to occur and friendships develop, trust grows, and the presence of Christ leads us to a place of loving respect.
Cultural discernment occurs when those who are part of the body of Christ in the church are mindful and sensitive to how different people connect to God in different ways. But, it is far more than just relevant cultural worship and teaching. Discerning how those coming desire to best learn about God and how they desire to connect to God by serving in specific ways is a huge piece of finding a place to call home and a hopeful way forward.
How are you ordering your life to be both invitational and sensitive to those around you? Everyone has a need to be loved, significant and productive and that’s a desire that is best met in a relationship with Jesus Christ! I am praying today that each of us becomes a part of sticky movement for God’ glory!