Standing on the sidewalk outside a church after its worship, I asked a young, professional-looking woman why she came to church that morning. Her answer was immediate: “I feel the power of God here.” She also explained that this church had reached out to her when she was in juvenile detention.
If you were asked that question, how would you answer and how long would you need to think about it? I suspect many traditional Christians from historic church bodies would struggle, only to come up with some version of, “That’s what we do on Sunday mornings,” or “This is where my friends are.”
When my family and I were members of a large Lutheran congregation that finished an impressive new sanctuary 35 years ago, I noticed that the average attendance reported in the weekly bulletin went down. Almost always a new sanctuary attracts more people. I asked the pastor why he thought fewer were attending. All he could come up with was, “I guess our people are losing the habit.” Habit is a very weak motivator for participating in anything . . .Read More