According to recent news reports,
spiritual seekers are forsaking religious institutions en masse.
"A revival is underway," writes Stephanie Nolen of the
Toronto Globe, "but for a phenomenon with Jesus at its
center, it has surprisingly little to do with mainstream
Writing for the New York
Times, Laurie Goodstein reports that, "a growing number of
Christians across the country are choosing a do-it-yourself
worship experience." Goldstein labels it a "decentralized
religious phenomenon." The cause? "Some are rebelling against
the contemporary culture of the mega-church. Others say they
have been alienated by pastors who hoard power."
Speaking from the perspective of the trench rather than a news
desk, I would explain the phenomenon with fewer syllables: we
love God, but we don't need a church board telling us what to
believe. We want honest answers to our biggest questions, but
the organized church has been hedging on us and can't look us in
the eye. We want a freelance walk with Jesus Christ, but the
church has put Him in a box and said in so may words: "Worship
our version of the Savior, or else."
There are reasons why the
organized church acts this way, reasons that go far deeper than
contemporary culture, power and religious authoritarianism.
2002-2006 by Martin Zender. All Rights Reserved