Earlier this week, I was listening to the National Public Radio show, On Point. Host Tom Ashbrook and guests were asking the question, \”What\’s Up With the Wild Weather?\” The unseasonably warm temperatures for most of the country this winter and incredibly damaging storms have led people to speculate about the meaning of such events. Recent polls indicate that increasing numbers of people named climate change as an immediate threat that was effecting the weather and their lives in the here and now, not somewhere off in the distant future.
This conversation could have just as easily been about the institutional church. Changes in cultural attitudes and practices regarding religion have been happening for decades. They’ve now become too big to ignore. Tornadoes have hit our churches — declining buy flagyl 500 mg participation and giving, diminished status in the wider culture and dwindling numbers of young people coming back to church — and our lives will never be the same. Just like those people speculating about the weather, we have to make meaning of what is happening around us. The advantage we have is that making meaning is what church DOES. We take those life changes and ask how God is working. We look for the signs of God’s call amidst what seems to be disaster.
How do you make meaning of your church’s current reality? How do you help people in your congregations make meaning of these changes? How do you help each other rebuild after and through this storm?