My thoughts as I think about the future - Part 2
During my first year of seminary I remember having lunch with one of my professors. Somehow we got on the topic of the Holy Spirit. I lamented to him that I often felt out of place at seminary because in my own spirituality, I identify most with the Holy Spirit. “It doesn’t feel like the Holy Spirit is talked about much in my classes,” I complained. He admonished me to hold on to this identification with the Holy Spirit: “We need you,” he said. In my last Pastor’s message, I touched on the topic of the new emerging label of those who are “spiritual but not religious.” There are a growing number of people who identify this way.
I can’t help but see a parallel in my struggle in seminary and those who identify as “spiritual but not religious.”
Scrolling through my Instagram feed I often come across friends (and strangers) who have become life coaches. They post positive, life-affirming messages, designed to help whoever may be reading them. They tout to help anyone out with any problem in their personal and/or professional life.
What I see this pointing to is a craving for one-on-one connections where a person can talk about the deep stuff. The painful stuff. The places where they’re stuck.
But what about questions about our souls? What about questions about spirituality?
Because I believe is there is also a craving for one-on-one connections where spiritual questions can be asked. I believe there is a craving for a place where people can ask their questions about religion, and church, and God, and the Bible, as well as questions about grace, and truth, and what happens when we die. And more importantly, I believe there is a craving for a place where people can ask these questions without judgement.
I believe being places where questions can be asked, is the future of the church at large.
For questions and issues specifically about the soul and spirituality, what would it be like for Christ United to become THE place to go to get that kind of help? As a ‘church of the future’ how do we as Christ United live into this future?
In the 3 months that I have been here, I have started to experience Christ United as a place where the big questions can be asked like this. So then the question is, how can we live into that even more? And how can we let more people know that this is what we are like?
As we are planning, praying, and dreaming about the future of Christ United, I’ll continue to turn all of this over in my head and pray about it. I hope you all will as well.
Peace and blessings,