This is the fourth and final part in a brief series on communication as part of the very quality of God and His Kingdom. It is also a clarion call to that Kingdom to become excellent at this vital issue, the very thing we were made for. You can find part one in the series here.
When people don’t see what we are doing as vital in their lives (and I mean everything from a church picnic to a Sunday sermon) then they begin to look at church services and events as religious duties performed by the faithful, but having little real meaning or import. They actually begin to view these times as something that must be endured, often primarily in order to maintain their fellowship with the people in the church.
This premise is held up by statistics. Our young adults are leaving the Church in record numbers. The reason that they list for this boils down to the fact that they don’t see Church as being something vital and essential in their lives. These statistics are addressed in both The Essential Church by Thom and Sam Rainer, and Simple Church by Thom Rainer and Eric Geiger. These 18-30 year-olds are not leaving randomly. They are leaving after fellowship in their church is interrupted by going off to college, graduating youth group, and a change in job schedule. Put simply, people are leaving Church when they are unable to maintain fellowship with the people they are close to in their church, because they don’t see the other functions of the Church as being important to their lives.
We cannot believe that the other functions of Church are not essential, but maybe we are making it seem that way. Our fellowship seems to be very good. In all of this, I am suggesting a deep examination of our communication styles, methods, and practice. Then based on that, we should endeavor to be the world’s foremost experts in communicating. Our pulpits should be studied and taught as the model of how to best share, motivate, and inspire. It is not just a good idea, it is our mandate. –Ryan