I can throw the Bride of Christ under a bus with the best of them.
I can diagnose issues, and even prescribe the solution. Certainly, there is a lot wrong with the American Christian experience. Theological liberalism. Subjectivism Worship music that is too loud. Worship music that’s not loud enough. Songs that are too old and need to be replaced by modern “choruses,” unless, of course, the old songs are performed by hipsters. Choruses that are too shallow and, as one blogger put it, “nothing more than tribal chants.” Missional. Attractional. The debate rages on.
No one is blind to the fact that young adults are turning their backs on Christianity in droves.
These are issues that need to be addressed, and I am committed to that discussion here—hopefully in a way that strikes a balance between thought-provoking and antagonistic.
But more and more, I hear these debates, and I want to stand up and say, “Leave Adventure Christian Church out of this!” I read post after post and article after article about what Christians are doing wrong, about what the church needs to do right, and how Christianity is broken. And more and more, even if the claim is largely true, I find myself saying, “my church doesn’t do those things.”
And I’m proud to belong there.
In vogue right now is bashing churches that focus on homosexuality and not gluttony (for whatever reason, this is the “allowable sin” du jour used by gay rights activists). But Adventure is a place where we accept everyone as they are, while encouraging everyone to become who God wants them to be. And that goes for everyone. I’ve never felt like anything was being “picked on.”
I hear about how churches don’t teach the Bible anymore. Adventure teaches the Bible. There are opportunities all throughout the week to study with others. We encourage private study, regular Bible reading, and planning sermon series always starts in the Word and goes from there. In fact, since returning to Adventure and being in a volunteer role, I’ve been looking for a place to serve, and have found needs scarce because our men are engaged, studying, serving, growing, holding each other accountable and discipling one another. So don’t group my church in when you talk about churches not preaching the Bible.
I just read an article about congregations no longer singing in church. The music might not always be your favorite style, or a song you know, but at the Church where I worship, we worship.This Sunday, our worship band (yes, rock band) dropped out and let the church sing praises to a God that we love. And it was amazing. Our church worships in song. We don’t just sing, but we praise, adore, glorify, honor, exalt, and celebrate a God that is worthy of that worship.
I hear people attack the church for lavish building expenses. We worship the Lord of the Universe in a warehouse.
In a world where every pastor’s moral failure is headlines, but the faithful leadership of thousands of churches is unsung, our Pastors and Elders grade better than any church I’ve ever seen when it comes to confronting conflict, sin and moral failure with eyes set on reconciliation and restoration.
People pick on the church for not doing enough “good” in the community, for not being the hands and feet of Jesus. But our church has regular programming for children with absentee fathers, single moms, addicts, youth, kids, men, women, the poor, the disabled and more. We have a generous missions giving budget, and there have been efforts to reorganize our missions giving (domestic and international) so that we can be more faithful to those men and women we support. This is an obedient church.
Adventure is not perfect. But none of us are. We shouldn’t expect imperfect people meeting en masse with other imperfect people to create perfection. But we are faithful and passionate to see Jesus glorified in the world.
And I have a hunch that more churches out there are like Adventure. Maybe we should think twice before lambasting Jesus’ bride. After all, I know how I react when people talk down about my bride. And my wrath ain’t nothin’ compared to his. My love for Mallorie pales in comparison to His love for His bride, the church.
So if you are in Louisville, and need a place where God is worshiped and his Word is taught, join us for worship. We’d love to add your voice to the throng!