I've been on vacation. Mary and I took a little break to get out of town. The trip was good, the weather was unusually favorable and the reunion of friends and family was great. I came away from these few days with an odd perspective; some members of the church were highly negative over the condition of today's church while those not of our tribe were oppositionally energized in interest regarding the life of God available for today's generations. Theirs is nearly a desperate plea for rescue from daily traumas. Yet, the church seems to miss such signals because it is debating itself as to who still does church best.
In visiting my hometown, the idea of ministering to others is non-stop. Everywhere I turned very common (many unchurched) are seeking answers to ordinary and routine questions. The news that Jesus is a man of too-good-of-news-to-be-true remains the originally intended...good news! Wonderfully I'm am able to share that in more places than the pulpit. The message fits the coffee shop as well as the town square.
I experienced such a stark difference from one town where I visited with church members (and understand not all were negative) and another where I connected in in heart with the market place. Here's what I wonder: I wonder if we have become so focused on the formation of the two hours on Sunday we have assumed that's the entire range and life of the church. It seems to me that in general those who are most disgusted with what goes on in our buildings on Sunday mornings are simply not aware God is just a focused and we are just as much a part of the church action on Tuesday mornings and Saturday afternoons.
God went to desperate measures to reach the Monday people and the Tuesday neighbors. Our concerns for improving and stabilizing the church will always be key. It will help if we remember God's people are on duty all seven days.