Some time ago, I had lunch with a dear friend and fellow elder. We always have a great time and just as important, we always have challenging discussions about the church and faith. This friend has shaped and challenged my thinking regarding faith and the church for many years yet, this specific conversation has stuck with me more than normal. I want to share this with you and even solicit your help in fleshing this out.
We spoke about culture and this movement toward simplifying life. We spoke about the many young people who are seeking to free themselves from the trappings of consumerism and materialism. This is so serious that it touches every aspect of life, even the food that is eaten. There are many today who have embraced veganism, vegetarianism, and seek to avoid any food that is not organically grown. Don’t belittle this because it is taken so seriously that it is almost religious for them. They often will pay exorbitant prices just to make sure that what they eat is clean and pure. Their foods must be free-range, all-natural, GMO-free, no fillers, no by-products, and no preservatives; or something similar.
I admit that I don’t know this stuff well enough and I am trying to learn it. Church, I believe that it just might be the niche that gives the church the push it needs to embrace our culture and open doors for the gospel of Jesus Christ.
This movement toward a cleaner, purer; all-natural way of life should be very important to us. It should be important because at its core these movements want the same things out of life and church that we set forth. They want simple, pure, uncorrupted, and genuine in every aspect of life but especially their church. From what I can learn and understand the most obvious reasons this new generation avoids church is because it appears fake to them. They can see what is done, from the primary focus inward that the church is not about loving God, loving each other, and taking care of people.
If we could just learn and incorporate this language into our vernacular it could be transformational for all involved. They need to learn about the Lord’s church and its push toward pure and undefiled Christianity. They need to hear that there is a church that wants the same things in life and faith as them. A church that wants to rid Christianity of all modern, man-made, impurities that damage the church and return to a time when the church was pure in doctrine and practice; to a time that is primitive and biblical. That is my goal and I believe it is yours as well. We just want to be Christians and free ourselves from all the other stuff that hurts and damages us.
What could happen if we actively engage our community, our culture, and proclaimed that we have the real deal? Well, honestly, it could go horribly wrong if we are not wholeheartedly committed to being the simple, pure church. But, if we are genuine disciples, seeking to just follow Jesus, love our world, and seek to help by making a real difference. It could change everything for our world, our church, and the souls of all involved.