I peruse quite a few blogs and definitely have my favorites. Some are by authors of books I read, some are well known pastors, or not well known. Worship leaders, missionaries, and even friends. Most blogs encourage dialogue and discussion; some blogs don't even have a comment section and are more of a monologue. I don't read those blogs.
Some blog provide original content, others focus on highlighting other's blogs. I am thankful for both. One such blog provides original content and links to blogs and videos is Zach Nielson's blog Take Your Vitamin Z, which I stumbled upon through another blog and now permanently read. His blog is even more exciting to me because he'll post a few times during the day, and I love that!
Today is Saturday, and a lot of bloggers don't post things on Saturday, but this guy oftentimes does. Here is a video he posted of Mark Driscoll titled Why Your Church Doesn't Feel Like Family.
I have been thinking lately why I love my church when oftentimes it disappoints and frustrates me. My qestions for me are:
Why is church so important?
What makes it so important?
I think these are key questions because, though I think there is a "right" Biblical answer, how an individual answers these questions makes a huge difference on how they view the importance of church. I tend to view the most important part of church is the message. (It happens to be my favorite part) Yet, if that is the biggest reason for me to attend church, then why go to church? I can listen to incredibly gifted speakers on a podcast.
For most of my friends, worship is the biggest reason they attend. While it is true that "worship" isn't just the singing part; it's the whole church service (and hopefully afterwards too) many of my friends go to church to sing in praise and worship to God. But can't one do that at home?
Perhaps church is important because of the community of other Christians, coming together to share life. I really do love the idea of this aspect of church. I agree with it, crave it. I want more community than just on Sunday mornings, and yet, find it really difficult. I often wonder if where I live is impossible to effectively slow down and create time to be with others in true community that God designed.
If community is the most important thing about church, does one really need a church to provide it?
I think we do. I know for me, I'd choose to surround myself with people that are similar to me. Even in church, I'm naturally drawn to those that I like, believe things more like I believe, and feel comfortable around. But church doesn't cater to that. Church is filled with people way different than I am, and the really cool and amazing thing is that...... we're actually not all that different. We're more the same than different. But I usually just see the surface: our theological differences, our parenting differences, our worship style differences, social and economic differences.
My thought? Church has a wonderful way of gathering people that are not "just like me." it is a sticky, messy community of imperfect people that love God, and by loving God, loving and serving each other and the world. Madly imperfect, of course. I do confess that I don't like it. I'd much rather it be similar to what I'm comfortable with.
It is a church's great strength: Unity. I do wonder how it can coexist with all the differences but it remains. As Mark Driscoll says in his video: It is family.