2 Comments

Church in the bible belt

I’ve lived for a year now in what the locals claim to be the “buckle” of the bible belt (to be honest, I’m still not sure what either term means), and I find that I’m in a near-constant state of questions about how church or Christianity works in a region that seems so saturated with churches and church people.

Old Country ChurchThis is not going to be a post about my strategy for the latest, greatest plan for reaching this area where you can’t swing a dead cat without hitting another church… rather, I’d love for this to be a forum of ideas on what we need to be mindful of in an area where everyone claims to have some kind of church affiliation.

What I see is a lot people who have been churched but not changed… familiar with enough of the language but not able to speak it to others… content with their own spiritual status but far from compelled to share it with a neighbor or friend …and those who aren’t churched have abundant opinions on what we’re all about.

What’s the best way …not to do church, but to be the (C)hurch where so many people already seem to have their minds made up on who we are?

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2 comments on “Church in the bible belt

  1. I think to be real and transparent. I think people are looking to know that christians are real people who don’t have all their crap together either. They enjoy coffee, laugh at jokes they know they shouldn’t and occasionally curse when they slam their finger in a door. I think the GREAT thing about blogs and twitter is that it humanizes and makes religious people REAL. But if we’re going to be real about our failures and our shortcomings, we also need to be real about our source of strengths and comfort and our struggle to live righteously in an inherently unrighteous world.

  2. I don’t think that churches in the Bible belt were always as complacent as they appear to be today. I think we have all heard stories of week long tent meeting where hundreds of people came to Christ in that week and the Bible was preached with such passion and vigor that it possibly scared people into redemption. And although the methods are not always cared for, the results is what we have today with the excess and almost oversaturation of churches in a concentrated area. The point is though that the churches came about by people who were committed to spreading God’s Word and were successful at it.

    Unfortunately, that same passion and vigor, that committment that was at one time associated with the Bible belt seems to have vanished. They have inadvertently cheapened God’s grace by inverting their faith.

    These are the churches that are dying on a daily basis because they have placed their lit candle not on a lampstand,but under a bowl; and the bowl does more than prevent the light from being seen, it snuffs out the flame. A paradigm shift needs to occur in the hearts and minds of these churches that will reignite the fire and cause the people to realize that they are the Church;we all are the Church and we need to act accordingly and continue to carry out the mission of Jesus Christ daily with intense passion and vigor.

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