In the 1940’s and 1950’s going to church was the thing to do. Social conformity delivered people to the church. It was an era of institutionalism and the church therefore could get by with being slightly more organizational, denominational, and institutional. Times change. People change. Unfortunately, as times and people have changed churches (mainline denominational churches) have not changed to meet their needs. Don’t get me wrong, I am not talking about watering down the gospel, I am talking about how we approach people and how we “do church.”
We live in a society where most families no longer live in the same state, much less the same city or neighborhood with each other. My own family is a case in point. I live in New Jersey; I have a sister in Virginia, a sister in Kentucky, and a brother who splits time between his homes in Kentucky and Florida. Many, if not most, families in America have similar situations. Since the normal family has become so scattered, people are looking for a new extended family. The church is one place that people can look for that “new” family.
That is why I believe that “how” we do church has to change. A congregation lives together as a family. A church functions as an organization. It is high time we stopped being just another organization that people “belong” to and start being what we are called to be—a family. We need to embrace the old song by Sister Sledge—We are Family.
We are family; often a very dysfunctional family, but a family none the less. It is time that we started acting like it—a family that cares for each other, looks out for each other, and truly loves each other. When the church starts becoming the family that God has called us to be, we will begin to do all of the things God has called us to do. Don’t you think it is time to quit playing church and start living as a family of God? If so, I’ll see you at our next family reunion—Sunday morning at 10:00 AM!