Friday, June 25, 2010
Technology, Leadership, Personality - Church
And in an era where video preaching is becoming ever more popular and makes more of an impact, the connection between church pastor and church brand can’t help but grow stronger. After all, every podcast downloaded is one more lengthy impression with the consumer (to use crass media buyer-speak).It strikes me that we need to remember that it's the world that defines the church this way - not us, yet we buy it totally.
Therein, though, lies the rub. Every pastor I’ve ever met is a person. A fallen, imperfect, inherently sinful person--just like every human who has ever lived, except for one guy about 2,000 years ago. So when a pastor leaves, falls publicly into sin or just goes on sabbatical for a few months, the church, its identity and its brand come tumbling after.
That is, unless the church and its leadership has a culture in place that’s deliberately, intentionally and passionately committed to pointing people toward Jesus and away from the guy with the wireless mic. That’s how disciples are made, how Christ is lifted up and how all our churches are made healthier and stronger.
I’m not arguing for or against video. Heck, I subscribe to a gaggle of vodcasts myself. What I am arguing for, though, is decentralizing leadership in an effort to avoid the worship-the-rock-star scenario that both non-Christians and Christians alike often fall into. If we do, not only will we be helping create stronger, more enduring church brands, we’ll be spreading the gospel more effectively.
Scripture gives us a very different image of church than the Sunday morning service - it's a community, even a culture, of people living together like and for Christ. The world thinks it's about Sunday morning.
And yet, centuries ago, we bought into the argument that since that is where the world focuses it's where we need to focus. But I think a big part of Christ's ministry was to tell us that such is not where we need to focus. We need to do more than decentralize leadership - we need to get truly radical about what church is and what church does. We need to focus on the community, not its head.