It has struck me afresh how often we pay lip service to big, deep, mysterious things… but those things feel sometimes like they are for show more than anything else. In my reading for the Doctor of Ministry that I am attempting to complete with Covenant Theological Seminary, I have begun asking the question “how do we get off balance as a church in regards to how we communicate God’s story through worship?” I hope that over the coming months and years to use this blog as a platform for developing some of those ideas (at least in my own mind).
In reading Dr. Robert Webber’s final book, Ancient-Future Worship, I was struck by this question:
“Considering our world situation in this postmodern time, waiting, so to speak, for a fresh narrative to explain and pull together the world, why do we Christians stay focused on the modern world that privileges reason, science, consumerism, and marketing?”
from Ancient-Future Worship: Proclaiming and Enacting God’s Narrative
Reason, science, consumerism, and marketing are the trading capital of the world in which we (most of us) live in. Consider reason and science. The popularity of classical apologetics and the virtual jettison of presupposition from the main stage of Christendom should make it clear. People don’t want “faith”. They want answers. Ideas like “mystery” and “unseen” cause people a whole lot of angst, especially when the church has become a mere amenity to their already comfortable lifestyle. So what do we do instead of giving them a biblical answer? We identify what they need (as consumers) and market to them (so that they will stay). The problem is we produce consumers instead of disciples, and the answers we give rarely have staying power, because instead of addressing root causes, we address symptoms.