Sunday, 14 June 2009
I had a wonderful meal last night, cooked by my father-in-law (also my pastor) and got to know a couple who pastor a church in Portglenone. They are so like-minded in so many ways - we joked they were a twin church! Anyway, we were discussing various life and church issues and how to reach our community. A word that came up again and again was 'Relevance'. So this morning my prayer time has been filled with asking God how we can become more relevant in our world.
Relevance can be defined as 'connected to what is happening; useful or suitable for a purpose.' To be relevant requires us to be connected to the world we live in, and to be useful and suitable for God's purpose. The question we as Christians should constantly ask ourselves is this: Are we connected to the world around us? Are we useful to the world outside the church?
"Even though I am free of the demands and expectations of everyone, I have voluntarily become a servant to any and all in order to reach a wide range of people: religious, non-religious, meticulous moralists, loose-living immoralists, the defeated, the demoralised - whoever. I didn't take on their way of life. I kept my bearings in Christ - but I entered their world and tried to experience things from their point of view. I've become just about every sort of servant there is in my attempts to lead those I meet into a God-saved life. I did all this because of the Message. I didn't just want to talk about it, I wanted to be in on it." (1 Cor 9:19-23, MSG)
It's good to know that Paul had the same desire. To reach people we have to adapt our lives and our approach to them. We have to understand how they think, communicate, interact, and view the world. It’s impossible to reach someone without adapting the way we communicate to his or her understanding.
Just something to think about...