As a pastor I am exposed to almost everything in the Church. I lead its worship each week, I talk to its members, I read about its growth and each week I handle its problems. All of this time in and around Church has led me to two conclusions about Church.
One – People are looking for a person and place to worship. They come to Church looking to experience the infinite. They see Church as a group of people who worship together.
Two – People are looking to connect with other people. They come to Church looking to experience relationships. They see the Church as a group of people who live for God together.
These two different sides of Church shape all that we think, experience and do in the Church. One group views the Church building as a holy temple where they come before God. The other group views the Church as a community building for activities that bring people closer together. One group views the Church as a place where Sunday morning is about reverence and worship. The other group views the Church meetings as places to talk and fellowship. And on and on the issues go.
The tension in the Church is often trying to get people see these two sides of the Church equally. We often think that our view is the correct one, and we even have verses to prove. Tensions rise when we think our side is all the Church should focus on each week.
How do you view the Church? Do you think the Church can function as both? If so, how? Just some food for thought.