“All human life on the earth is like grass,
and all human glory is like a flower in a field.
The grass dries up and its flower falls off,
but the Lord’s word endures forever.
This is the word that was proclaimed to you as good news.”
— 1 Peter 1:24-25
I often find myself in the position of being the youngest person in the room. Being 22 in Mainline Protestantism in the Bible Belt, that is no surprise. I hope you won’t be offended if I break the news to you that you’re not cool. (For the record, I’m not cool either, but I do know some cool people and I know what’s cool, so I’m qualified enough to judge.) It is a great temptation for the church to do everything it can to stay relevant, to conform to the surrounding culture.
The trouble with that little-L law ‘Thou shalt be relevant,’ is that in pursuing relevance or coolness, the church often loses its soul. Even if it does find the world and bring in numbers, those numbers often are not translated into true disciples. Coming to a concert in an auditorium where the five letters J-E-S-U-S are on the sign or are said from the microphone is not the same thing as being brought into a sanctuary, falling on one’s knees at the altar, and receiving Christ.
My generation is interested in authenticity. Most churches are focused on issues of style when it comes to reaching young people, and yet substance is so much more important than style for today’s young people. So as a delegate from 20-somethings,I want to set you free from that self-imposed law, “You must be cutting edge” and encourage you to embrace the rich tradition that we have as Christians. I could not be less interested in the latest trends in Christianity and church. Trends come and go. What endures forever, as the apostle Peter said, is the word of the Lord (and not just any ‘word,’ per se, but the Word of the Gospel, the good news that was preached to you, the word of absolution, the word that ‘we believe in the forgiveness of sins,’ as the Creed says). That Word will endure forever.
Click here to read more.