My Feb. 12 sermon, “The Modern Church,” received a great amount of comment. I am grateful for the many kind words. Many of our younger members have contacted me with their thoughts and ideas on how we might move as a congregation into this new era. I am grateful for their willingness to reach out and I look forward to hearing from many more of our members, young and old and in between, on what may be next for our marvelous congregation!
As I mentioned in the sermon, theologians and church historians are not sure yet what to call this change we are experiencing. This can be very disconcerting. Some folks will simply want to hold on to the past. Others may be tempted to grab hold of the fad of the moment and hope that something sticks.
The more difficult course is one that strikes a balance between holding on and reaching out, looking forward, while remembering our past. Faith columnist Bill Tammeus noticed my sermon title and sent me a report he thought I might find helpful. I did. It is a document he helped write for our friends over at Second Presbyterian Church. They note that the world is rapidly changing but people are still hungry for something spiritual. They quoted theologian Harvey Cox who wrote: “People turn to religion more for support in their efforts to live in this world and make it better, and less to prepare for the next. Faith is resurgent, while dogma is dying. The spirtual, communal and justice-seeking dimensions of Christianity are now its leading edge as the 21st century hurtles forward, and this change is taking place along with similar reformations in other world religions.”
Cox says that this new era might be called “The Age of the Spirit.” In other words, the old dividing lines among Christians may no longer matter. Through the power of the Spirit we may find the ability to move out to the world with the ability to invite people to a renewed sense of faith.
This is an exciting time to be a person of faith. I can’t think of a congregation better equipped than Country Club Christian Church to move with dexterity and fluidity into this new era.
Grace and peace to you,