I read a very interesting post about reaching the unchurched last week. Gary Lamb, who pastors Revolution Church in Canton, Georgia shared his thoughts about doing church. So many churches say they want to reach the lost, but they don’t want the “messiness” that goes along with it.
It is so easy for a church to say one thing, but not back it up with their actions. In our area, it is easy for preachers to be “hard” on sin. They can preach hard against homosexuality and abortion and get plenty of amens. Why? Because most people aren’t being tempted by those sins. People feel good about themselves when they hear how bad everyone else is. But when you get people in your church that are really struggling with sin, the church typically turns their back on them. Why, because dealing with sin is messy. Breaking addiction takes hard work. Dealing with sexual sin is tough. Talking about pornography is uncomfortable. But if the church is really serious about reaching the lost, then you will have to help people deal with their sin. So, as a church, are we serious about reaching the lost? Do we back it up with our actions? Or do we just want to be cool and edgy and draw people from other churches? These are the questions that drive what we do. We must be strategic in how we reach out and engage our community. Check out a small quote from Gary’s post below:
We had a person on our staff a couple of years ago who came here because he wanted to be part of a church that reached unchurched people. The first time his wife sat next to a couple of lesbians, he was rethinking that. This guy was a nice guy, but he couldn’t handle the ugliness that comes with reaching those that are far from God. He literally walked around the church on Sundays with a look of terror in his eyes. He didn’t want to reach lost people, he wanted a church where he could come and wear whatever he wanted and impress other Christians because he was at an church with a little edge. It wasn’t long before he was running for the hills. He couldn’t handle the messiness of reaching those with problems. The sad thing is he isn’t alone. Most guys can’t handle it.