The simple answer to this question is, “Because God created.”
Unfortunately, that’s not exactly what I meant by this question.
Why do we do anything in the church? What is the main purpose for everything that we do?
It all goes back to the vision of the church, and for the vast majority of churches that is derived from two simple things.
Reach the lost.
Disciple the saved.
When new ideas, techniques or resources are added to a church many question the reasoning. Usually this is because those who don’t understand aren’t in the demographic this new thing is intended for. For them, the church was fine without it and doesn’t need it.
But let’s be honest, we don’t need anything for the church body to worship, reach the lost or make disciples. No chairs, no lights, no air conditioning, not even a building. The Holy Spirit can work without these “fancy” things. The Bible even says the rocks will cry out, so why do we bother doing anything?
SIDE NOTE: If I ever have someone say to me, “They didn’t have that in the Bible so we don’t need it in the church now!” I have a great come back.
“By your rules we have to get rid of the toilets too.”
Here’s the point.
We create because there are people who will appreciate the creativity. We create because lack of creativity could be a stumbling block to someone. Just like bad worship or no air conditioning could keep someone from encountering God.
Lately though, I’ve realized that even after the most productive day I feel like I forgot to do something. In fact, it’s on these days that I feel this way the most. These days usually consist of printing, cutting, folding, setting up and tearing down. So what am I missing?
I realized today that my day doesn’t feel complete if I haven’t honestly* spent time designing something new.
*By “honestly” I mean something that I take the time to passionately research and skillfully design. Like the bellow logo, which is my latest favorite.
Sadly I have a lot of things I could be spending this “honestly” time with, but I don’t have enough hours in the day, and that depresses me even more. The only thing worse than not doing anything creative in a day is doing something halfheartedly because you don’t have enough time to fully invest in it. I feel like a large part of my job is deciding what ministries or events get shafted.
So I’ll continue my productivity search until I find those extra hours in the day.
LifeWay recently made some huge (amazing!) changes to their Sunday School curriculum. With that change came a lot of opinions. Most of the opinions I heard were very favorable… and by “most” I mean all but one.
I was speaking with someone specifically about the children’s curriculum. She was very upset that the old style of Bible story drawings were gone and replaced with “cartoon” coloring pages. The “old style” she was referring to were realistically drawn images that have been around for decades. I remember being a kid and thinking “Wow, these pictures look old!”. If I thought that back in the 90’s, what do you think the kids of today are thinking?
Her reason for not liking the coloring pages was because they were cartoon-like and would make the children think the Bible is filled with neat stories that didn’t really happen. She thinks the children will relate the stories to the cartoons they see on TV and not the Bible they are being taught is God’s word. She is worried that we are trying to be more relevant to the kids at the cost of watering down the message of the Gospel.
Why are we so afraid to present the Gospel in a way that works for people? The old style isn’t wrong, it’s just not right anymore. If they are coloring a picture of Jesus with the woman at the well they are investing time and effort in looking at the image and thinking about it. How often do kids take home the old style pictures and look at them? How often do parents put the picture on the refrigerator? Seldom, if ever.
The contemporary vs. traditional debate is about more than just how we worship with music, and I’m learning that more and more every day.