Tension: 1) The act or process of stretching something tight. 2) The interplay of conflicting elements.
Some bad news for church leadership wonks out there: church is not cool.
We try to play it all cool because we know that “sells” in our culture. We’re concerned about stage presence or the way our graphics look or the language we use to communicate. We meet in “cool” places, play “cool” music, and talk about “cool” stuff. We attempt to project coolness at every turn.
We trick ourselves into thinking that it’s cool when the church is big . . . or if our church has a great band . . . or if we do really cool video stuff . . . or if the relationships are really genuine.
But’s really not cool.
To the broad culture – church is about as cool as Sci-Fi convention. The fact that we are big, have great music, do cool video stuff or have close relationships just underscores the not-so-coolness. Imagine someone from the local Klingon Klub using the same words to describe their deal as you use to describe your church.
It’s about that cool to people.
The message of Jesus is an emotional one. At it’s core it takes a far amount of inner passion to keep your faith alive.
People do run the ramp of reason but there is still a leap of faith. And that leap is an emotional one. It moves beyond style and content to the realm of passion to make that sort of decision.
To recap . . . we try to play it cool in our churches because cool communicates “ok-ness” while at the same moment we know it takes emotions at some level to make the connection.
Seems like a tension to me. What about you? How do you see that tension working in your church this weekend?