This is so encouraging to read – especially from a church with the size and influence of Life Church:
The American Church is not lacking for “cool” pastors. Like a single guy who is trying just-a-bit-too-hard to impress a girl, some churches are simply trying too hard to be cool.
I’m very encouraged to see a shifting in direction. For years, many of us seemed focused on:
- Designing relevant church experiences.
- Producing entertaining videos.
- Creating inviting environments.
- Crafting sermon series to draw a crowd.
- Writing sermons with shock value and plenty of humor or stories.
While all of the above can be effective tools, many of my friends are intentionally moving in a stronger direction. So many great Christian leaders are seeing far better results with:
- Bathing a sermon in prayer.
- Fasting regularly.
- Practicing personal confession and repentance.
- Preaching from the overflow of time alone in God’s word.
- Caring deeply for others in biblical community.
I’m thrilled so many leaders are placing less emphasis on being cool and more emphasis on being like Christ.
Relevance matters as long as we define relevance as meeting people where they are at a point of need. But it’s so easy to spend time fighting a battle we won’t win. We can have fun and tell great, meaningful stories. That’s good and important. But if it’s about the flash and cool-factor alone, we’ll never beat Hollywood, Comedy Central, or even SNL! Creativity is great, but there’s something more to our message.