Interesting observation…

I read a post this morning by another blogger that inspired some thought.
He theorizes that the reason the Canadian Church is having difficulty with progress is that we look for reasons things won’t work.
The article can be found here: 21 Ways to make it happen…or not.

I know this may be controversial.

I also know that he’s given me something to think about.  Are we our own worst enemy?  Are we the reason the church isn’t succeeding as it should?

What do you think?

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10 responses to “Interesting observation…

  1. He had an interesting post…and lots of thought-provoking commenters as well. And, I only got about halfway through the comments. As an American, I’m sad to say I don’t know all that much about my brothers and sisters in the Canadian Church. I’m guessing that it doesn’t have the kind of mega churches that seem to be so predominant in America right now. In that regard, bigger (bigger buildings, more people) isn’t necessarily better.

    As far as the question of innovation….well, in a way, yes it’s good that people are willing to discuss ways to make our churches more effective, more outreaching. But, my feeling is this…the Church is God’s and His alone. He doesn’t NEED us to move in the lives of people. We are priviliged that he does indeed use us. But, ultimately it is His Spirit that changes lives, communities, nations.

    I believe that a truly strong church is one that is devoted to prayer. Prayer has so much more power than physical stuff we look at. Traditional v. Contemporary. Worship songs v. Hymns. New buildings v. Old buildings. When the Church prays, God releases His Spirit… not because of choices made about the other things we so hotly debate.

    I think that the Western Church could learn a great deal from our brothers and sisters in countries on the other side of the world. There is serious revival and growth happening among some of the poorest, most destitute of our world. What IS it that makes that happen? It’s not any of the stuff that we focus on. I believe it’s that they come from a place of absolute need and surrender.

    And, that part is hard for us who have so much.

    Wow. Sorry that got so long.

    • Thanks for your post Karen! There is no such thing as ‘so long’. You had great things to say.

      I completely agree with you that bigger isn’t better. Bigger can sometimes overwhelm the mission. I think the thing that used to frustrate me the most as an active minister was hearing that people didn’t care what happened in the church, they wanted the church to be there until they died. That attitude isn’t a very Christian one. It’s selfishly motivated and somehow I don’t think God supports or encourages that. You are right, ultimately God is who blesses people, changes lives and makes a difference in the world but we as people need to be open to receive it. Sometimes I feel like we shut doors God opens because we are afraid.

      You are absolutely right about prayer being essential. Also about stuff getting in the way. Sometimes we take our blessings for granted and this turns us away from God.

      Sometimes I have to wonder if we are talking ourselves to death. Too much talk and too little action. We need to act in faith, following God’s way. I also think we need to remember to worship. Worship is about intentionally greeting God and giving thanks. We need to place ourselves in that position of surrender more often then we do. When we have so much we forget what’s important. 

      I know I often talk about innovation. I do believe though that innovation can come in many forms. When God inspires us to change and grow great things can happen. You can bring life back into a traditional service. A contemporary service can speak to the hearts of the people attending. It’s not how we worship that is important. What matters is that we worship! We need to listen to God and see where God is moving us too be. When we follow God’s way great things will happen.

      Thanks so much for your comment! It was fantastic!

  2. Becky- I have been following this on your blog and Carey’s- thank you. But what I am failing to see is the 21 ways listed that the Americans would use to make this change happen as referred to by Carey. As a Canadian minister, I can think of 21 ways to make it happen here in our churches-yes there is negativity but there is also lots of positive things happening as well. Perhaps those ways are similiar and simply could be shared by all of us as we all work together in the body of Christ to share the Light of God. What do you think?

    • Angela, as I have worked with you IRL I know how committed you are to being a positive force for Christ. There are positive things happening (you’re one of them!) but I do think we have a tendency as a church to get caught up in the ‘we can’t do it’ or ‘we’ve never done it this way’. Too often we turn to our ‘rule book’ (you know what I’m talking about! 🙂 ) and find reasons not to do things. Perhaps we need to spend more time in prayer and focus on what God wants us to do! We do need to work together to share the light of Christ! We need to believe, follow and act in accordance with God’s wishes. When we do this, great things can and will happen!

      Thanks for your comment!

  3. The Church as a whole needs to start trusting that through Jesus Christ good things can and do happen. I agree that Canadian church leaders peraps more than their American counterparts thrivae in negativity. Many leaders in the Church today seem to like to use the phrase which I have come to dislike more than most — “the post Christian era.” This sentiment only further fosters a lack of belief in the future of the Christian Church. The greatest threat to the Church is not it’s adversaries but rather the apathetic and defeatest approach of those who call themselves friends

    • The Church does need to start believing in Jesus again.
      Isn’t it funny to say that. It’s a little sad but sometimes I think we’ve forgotten who is in charge.

      Thanks for your comment!

  4. I would love to see the 21 negative….ways written out so that we can stop them from happening over and over and make that change through prayer and work- this blog could be one way to stop the negativity. I agree we need to change but we also need to embrace the positive and share it as much as possible. I would also like to see the 21 American ways so we can learn from them instead of just knowing they have them. Just a thought- we need to learn from and help each other Americans and Canadians together build up the Body of Christ!

  5. Way too literal Angela!!!! He is making a point which I think are proven by your response.

  6. He is making points which are difficult to see when taken too literal. Your response is just what he is writing about. We get very protective of our little piece of the pie and then we aren’t open to real ideas when they come along.

  7. The twenty one items are hypothetical, why are we even talking about this, the number of problems isn’t the issue, it’s how we approach them.

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