Here is a post from my Formspring page that I thought might be helpful.
What should I do if I’m not feeling encouraged to go back to my church?
Is the problem with you or the church? Is the church preaching the Scriptures? Are they working towards growing in the knowledge and love of God? If the answer is yes, then the problem may lie within your heart. Church is the people of God meeting together to encourage each other and bring glory to God. So there is a heavy emphasis there on you to do the encouraging.
Is church a place where you go to build up others? Is church a place you go to encourage people in their Christian life? Is church a place you go to serve? If you’re not doing these things, then it doesn’t matter where you go to church- the problems will follow you.
Be the encourager. Be an example. And then see, over time, if church is a place where you feel encouraged as well.
At the start of this year, I took on a new role at my church. I went from being a student minister (1 day a week) to the Associate Minister of St Luke’s Liverpool (I think it’s an 8 day a week job, but I haven’t figured out how that works yet). One of the benefits of this new role is that I upgraded to a bigger office. One of the downsides is that I’m actually expected to work, so punching out articles has become harder.
Anyways, last week some friends of mine who are youth ministers were sharing photos of their desks on Facebook. I thought that other people may be interested in checking out my workspace. You’ll notice that there aren’t as many toys in current office as there were in my previous home office. Trying to think through the issues of minimalism vs fun. Any suggestions? What’s missing?
Formspring is a website that was launched at the end of 2009. The idea is that people will send you questions anonymously to your Formspring account and you will post the answers on your public page. The site also links to Facebook and Twitter, so your followers on these sites will see what questions you are answering.
I first came across Formspring when I saw several comic book professionals that I follow on Twitter using the site to interact with their fans. People would send these pros questions and everyone would get to benefit from the answers. As an Australian comic fan, this was great. It gave me access to these writers and artists that I wouldn’t normally have as I can’t make it to any comic book conventions in the US. I can ask them questions as well as hear the answers to other people’s questions.
It got me thinking. How can Formspring be used for Christian ministry?
Can you be a Christian and not go to church? Have you ever been asked this question? Have you ever asked this question yourself?
There’s a tension between church attendance and the gospel of grace. We know that we’re saved by grace alone. So technically no, you don’t have to go to church.
So what priority should you place on church attendance?
I preached this sermon at St Luke’s last Sunday. I received a lot of positive feedback and would be keen to hear more comments.
The idea of an online church has been around for as long as the internet. This online church in Indiana has been getting 60,000 unique hits a week. Has any ever checked this out (or a similar online church community)? What’s the difference between this and downloading a preacher’s podcast each week? Is it able to move beyond being something you watch and become something you engage with? Church is not just something you witness each Sunday. It’s something you actively experience and engage with as you work together to build the body of Christ. This is the biggest challenge I see for online churches.
And would buying up Google search words like “Sex” and redirecting people to your internet church really be helpful? I can see a lot of people getting mighty frustrated and angry at the church for that.
I read a lot of webcomics. And why not? They’re free after all. One of my favourites is a comic called Something Positive. This strip is witty, well drawn, and very, very not PC. If you even the slightest bit offended by almost anything, then do not read Something Positive.