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Mar '11

It's Good to be Uncomfortable

While thinking about Lent and all the other things going on at our church, I am again reminded of something my Dad said: “You should never be comfortable at church.”  It took me a while to let this sink in but it is one of those ideas that has stuck with me all these years and one that I truly struggle with in church today. 

The idea is that church should be a place to challenge you. You should be forced to do things you wouldn’t normally do, in Jesus name. If you look at the life of Jesus and his early followers, they were never comfortable and Jesus was constantly challenging his disciples on their beliefs, actions, etc. This should be what churches do today as well, but so often, church is just seen as the place to go to get something for yourself.

I definitely understand that we need a place to be built-up and restored, but restored from what? For Jesus and his disciples, they were out in the community, teaching, preaching and healing all day long. After a long day of not only serving, but most likely being attacked for their beliefs, they truly needed to gather together to be reaffirmed. We Christians today, especially in America, don’t really have this same struggle. As such, Church needs to focus on being the instigator of action, encouraging–no, requiring–us to serve our community.

However, I don’t believe that a church has to choose to be one or the other. A church doesn’t have to do either service and fellowship.  It can easily do both! A potluck dinner can help raise funds for a specific mission. Or, even better, have you ever noticed how much you connect with people when you volunteer with them? Go out and serve with members of your congregation and you will be amazed how uplifted you feel afterwards! As an added bonus, you’ll be amazed how those “huge” issues your church is dealing with (color of carpet, contemporary vs. traditional worship, who drank the last cup of coffee, etc.) suddenly seem so insignificant.

A few of my favorite quotes about this:
“Move out of your comfort zone. You can only grow if you are willing to feel awkward and uncomfortable when you try something new.”

“God, make me so uncomfortable that I will do the very thing I fear.”

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