Friday, September 03, 2004

Radical church

When our church was robbed a week ago, you can imagine what everyone was thinking about: security, grilles, locks, etc. Someone suggested we move since the neighbourhood was getting kinda unsafe. I mean, how would you feel if you were one of the eighteen who had to face three men brandishing foot-long parangs?

A friend who read my blog at xanga had this to say:
"Personally, I would rather have an open church (like those shrines by the roadside) with no valuables to worry about, where people can come in anytime to pray and seek God (and counsel?). One that is filled with all sorts of expensive equipment and decoration may appeal to church members but not a troubled stranger, drug addict, or social misfit who’s looking for an answer from God. But I guess it would be most difficult to change the present church culture into something so radical."
Hmm, churches that are merely meeting places, devoid of ‘things’ and maybe ‘emblems’ too. Well, this one did not stop 3 troubled but armed strangers from walking through our doors anyhow! I'm not sure about churches being like 'shrines' but there’s real merit in having simple premises: less ostentatious, not showy, but functional. Then there’s Roger who wrote this in his blog:
"Churches, themselves, are not cool. House churches are not cool. Traditional churches are not cool. Emerging churches are not cool. Mega-churches are not cool. Seeker churches are not cool. Cell group churches are not cool. Churches with buildings are not cool. Churches without buildings are not cool. We have such a human tendency toward unhealthy self-centeredness that we want to take our human expressions of God's grace and admire the human aspects of them. Churches are not cool.

We are the church. How we express the church, or "do" church, or gather, or build, or worship when we gather, doesn't make it any better. How we be the church, today, ourself, is the only point. How we, as humans, reflect the wonder and grace and beauty of God, and point to Him, and let Him express His glory through our weakness and brokeness, is the point. God's grace seen is the point. God's redemptive work displayed through us is the point. God's Kingdom revealed is the point."

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