January 11, 2005


Have you noticed that we have this obsession with labeling everything?

I have. I've been puzzling over this recently, as I've continued my investigation into the modern church and how the modern approach must be altered (or destroyed and created anew) to serve the postmodern generation. It would appear that modernist churches have begun to reflect the culture in which they evolved, labeling everything and everyone. For example, the churches all have a corporation-like leadership structure, complete with executive senior pastor, assistant senior pastor, secretaries, worship pastors, etc.


I'm thinkin, yeah. And I can't quite figure out why this bothers me so much. I mean, it makes sense to have everything organized. It makes sense to make sure everybody knows who's who and who does what jobs and that sort of thing. But then again, nobody in the first church was really labeled, except for function. They did the stuff they were good at, and the older ones who knew more were "elders" so they could help people. Not really labels, but more like descriptions. Or let's take it back further, to Jesus. His followers weren't labeled by rank either, they were just called "disciples" because they happened to be following Jesus around. Same deal, they were described, not labeled.

Which was cool, because nobody could get a big head and be like "I'm the one in charge here, don't mess with me." This isn't a statement about my church, mind you, our senior pastor is an awesome guy who loves his congregation very much, and so do a lot of other pastors. But for some reason, the church decided it should label everyone and put them in a heirarchy.

I don't get that.

It seems to make sense from a business standpoint, but the church isn't a business - it's a group of people serving God. We're not "for-profit," we're prophets. We're on a mission to bring the world to experience God, to know Jesus, not on a mission to build bigger buildings and raise our salaries.

Maybe in the next generation of churches we should settle for team leadership, for the minimum of titles necessary so that nobody thinks they're better than anyone else. Maybe the teams should be an example of how the church should be as a whole - a dynamic community.

Please leave me your thoughts on this one, I'm not really sure what to do with it.

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