Apparently, my in-process feelings toward the mega-church idea has drawn a bit of attention. A blogger (Ken Gurley) on Chron.commons has mentioned my post (I’m the “downright hostile” one in the following quote):
Not everyone is convinced of the worth of megachurches (see 1, 2). Some are downright hostile in their views of these super-sized congregations. (Me doth think some of the hostility might be tinged with a wee bit of jealousy.)
Three brief comments:
- Gurley’s final question, “What should be a church’s basis of success?” is an excellent one–one my allegedly hostile post actually considers.
- I question whether Gurley read the entire post, for the bulk of my post consists of me eating crow for my presumption-based opinion.
- Finally, I live in Southern California. If I wanted to attend a mega, there are several at my disposal. But I have been called by God to partner with Torrance First Baptist (currently as a lay teacher and worship band member) and I shall not be moved unless God gives me a clear push and pull to go elsewhere. My friends can correct me if my self-assessment is in error, but I see not even a wee tinge of jealousy in my posted perspective–(sometimes too) blunt passion, yes, but jealousy, no.
Finally, for those who choose not to read my entire original post, here is the summary paragraph (emphasis added).
So, what is the bottom line? I am finding that I do not object to the mega church, per se. What I object to is the human tendency to equate size with success, self-protective clinging with faithfulness, and rote imitation with God-following. I willingly admit that there is nothing unbiblical about the mega church. On the other hand, given our “super size me” culture, leadership teams in mega churches (and, in fact, in all churches) must take special care to create room for all four relational spaces, must intentionally—and repeatedly—focus on God’s mission, and must actively pursue God’s ways for their particular community context.
In even shorter terms, what I object to is smaller churches who model themselves after megas (or businesses, or anything else) with no apparent regard for God’s measures of success (love God, love people, make disciples) and megas who sell their unfiltered “product” to smaller churches, thereby exacerbating the problem.
Let us be thoughtful, biblical, and wise in our ecclesiological choices.
NOTE: I would converse with Gurley directly on his post, but it appears one must register with Chron.commons in order to comment. That is unfortunate.