Wednesday, September 26, 2012

The Excitement and the Anticipation: A Comment Response

One idea I had for a blog was to dedicate it as a platform to respond to other blogs. This would be more effective than leaving a comment because a) Who reads those anyway?* and b) A way to expand more on your thoughts and foster a bigger dialogue.

Rather than start a totally new blog for such a simple concept, I'm going to see if I can implement it as a feature within this one. And I already have a test subject! So here it is, a direct comment reply to another author's blog post.

I really enjoyed reading Tim Challies' post titled The Excitement And The Anticipation about the expectation many Christians have for conferences compared with the local church.

I think part of the reason that people attend conferences with higher anticipation is also a psychological one. Particular conferences happen once a year, and there is a cost to it, so there is a mentality of ensuring that the price of attendance has been warranted. If the price of a conference was free, there is a subconscious mentality that you're not really missing out.

Socially they would anticipate conferences more because there are people that they would otherwise not get the opportunity to see, or people they do not see often enough.

Now I'm not suggesting that local churches start charging admission for their services, or have a weekly guest  "celebrity" speaker, but what can help with the excitement?

Something my pastor has done this year in our communications method is go from regular email to a free email service, MailChimp. It no longer looks like email reminders but rather electronic newsletters that is much more aesthetically pleasing to the eye. Honestly it's not so different from receiving news about a seminar at a conference, which are key features to such an event.

One idea I thought of approaching Sunday sermons was that of school. Now those of you in school are probably rolling your eyes, but think about this for more than two seconds. The classes are paid for already, you just need to show up and take notes. And know that there is a final exam, prepare for the final exam! What is the final exam? It's not really "final" but "daily" - the choices you have to make between choosing righteousness or folly. Are you going to take what you have learned and apply it to your life? Maybe the way to anticipate the local church is to reflect on the week and see how you applied it, or where you can apply it in future. 

My church offers truth application groups as a means to make this happen. Each week a small group (no more than eight people usually) meet to share what we've learned from the sermon and how to apply it practically.

*I'm referring to posts that have over 100+ comments where most all of them are saying the same thing in a hundred different ways.

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