A couple of weeks ago, my husband heard a promo for a new church in our area. He went to their website to check it out and what he found can only be described as disturbing! Here are some quotes from their website:
"We believe that church can and should not only be relevant to your life, but it should also be a fun place to come. We also believe that kids don't have to be bored at church. One of the things that we hear from people that come to Foundations is, "We don't have to drag our kids to church any more. They get us out of bed on Sunday mornings! Our family loves coming to church."
Every week we do what is called "Fusion." This is what happens when Nickelodeon collides with the local church. What results is a zany, high energy environment that the whole family will enjoy.
So fire up the double shot of espresso load up the minivan, and experience a relevant, exciting, and fun church right here in your community!"
"Following the adult and children’s gatherings, families will come together for a 45 minute family extravaganza. It will be a presentation that is relevant to all ages. What Walt Disney would do, had he gone to seminary. A sort of spiritual Nickelodeon. It will be fun. It will be entertaining. But most importantly, in age-appropriate ways it will reinforce Christian principles and deliver God’s Word."
Where do I even begin with this? I realize that I am really hormonal right now and I want to protect you from an irrational, hormonal rant ... but this may actually be a rational, hormonal rant! (Did you know there was such a thing?)
Church should not be relevant to us and where we are! That's one of the problems with many evangelical churches today. They live out practices which favor a man-centered theology while neglecting God-centered theology. I think "children being bored at church" is often just a reflection of the hearts of their parents. How can we be bored when God's Word is being opened? How can we be bored when we are hearing the voice of God? If we are bored, then we need to check our own hearts.
"When Nickelodeon collides with the local church ... what Walt Disney would do if he went to seminary..." Do I even need to go here? I just can't stomach that! My prayer for my children is that they would never be exposed to this type of collision. My prayer is that they meet God each week as they dive into His Word. That is my prayer for my entire family. Church isn't about me and what I want and making myself feel good. (Read what Kim wrote). Church is about God - worshipping Him, opening His Word! We don't need to alter it - or make it pretty - or present it creatively - we just need to present IT!
Update from a comment: Check out this quote from Pastor Kent Hughes, of College Church, in Wheaton, Illinois; "The unspoken but increasingly common assumption of today's Christendom is that worship is primarily for us--to meet our needs. Such worship services are entertainment focused, and the worshipers are uncommitted spectators who are silently grading the performance. From this perspective preaching becomes a homiletics of consensus--preaching to felt needs--man's conscious agenda instead of God's. Such preaching is always topical and never textual. Biblical information is minimized, and the sermons are short and full of stories. Anything and everything that is suspected of making the marginal attender uncomfortable is removed from the service. Taken to the nth degree, this philosophy instills a tragic selfcenteredness. That is, everything is judged by how it affects man. This terribly corrupts one's theology."