Wednesday, December 27, 2006

It's time for a change

again, tony morgan writes another question that growing churches should be asking...

#6 – Do people accept change as normal? Believe it or not, even churches can develop a culture where change is both expected and embraced. This is important as change is most critical in a culture that is continually “morphing”.

why is change so difficult for people...especially adults. children learn, at an early age, that they are not the controllers of their own destiny. heck, they don't control their bedtime, their choice of friends, their menu, their finances, their wardrobe, or the music that's played in the family car. they have to accept that others make decisions for them and they must learn to adjust on the fly...or be frustrated with life pretty much all the time.

then, somewhere along the path, children grow up to be adults. and adults are the controllers of their worlds and the masters of their own universe. as adults, we make our own decisions and assume full responsibility for the outcome. we know what's best for our lives and, if asked, we probably know what's best for our neighbors, our schools, and our favorite athletic team. honestly, if the president would just ask, most of us have the answer for poverty, aids, the national deficit and world peace. he just needs to ask.

and there's the problem. since we know what's just about any area...change is tough. i like what i like and if someone comes along and messes with it, well...they're probably wrong. most of us have opinions about the way church is supposed to be done. strong ones. opinions about music and preaching and money and buildings and sunday school and leadership and marriage and biblical inerrancy and hundreds of other areas...some really important and others that probably don't amount to a hill of t.o.'s sound bites...

here, let me say it...we need to get off our high horses and admit that we don't often know what's best when it comes to church. there are many "right" ways to do it. there are countless ideas, strategies, programs, and possibilities. we need to swallow our fear of change. if something is not working, we need to change it. if something can be done better, we need to change it. if there is the possibility of becoming more effective, more relevant, more faithful, more influential...we need to take the risk

1 comment:

bonzimmer said...

This reminds me of what my mother in law recently told me.

The large church she attends would like to put at least one screen up (maybe two) in their church so that members in the congregation could read the words to songs that they sing and learn more about church events (like the one that our church has).

Unfortunately, there is a significant group of members talking about how they will leave the church if they do. The fear of changing the interior of the church - technological progress - is threatening to tear the church a part.

Although I believe that the church does need these screens, after having had visited a few times, I am saddened that such a trivial event would make members leave her church.