So, hey, my main problem with millennials is I just kind of wanna be one. However, since God seemed determined that I be born in 1958 instead of 1998, that just is not in the cards. I will never be a millennial. That is just simple truth.
Speaking of truth, and the Church, well I wasn’t speaking of the Church but so now I am, is that millennials can see a lie from about 50 miles away. They can smell BS even when it’s bathed in essential oils and holy water. So, speaking of the Church and from the Church, I get that. My nostrils are not quite as new and well honed as yours, a little bit worse for the wear and tear, my nose hairs in the way (some of them quite long, but that’s for a different day).
But I have a secret. We, the Church, don’t actually know what we are doing. We are not actually better than you are, although we often want to think we are and certainly want you to think we are too. That’s called control, and we like it. It feels safe. It feels, well, in control. However as you have probably already smelled out, we are imposters. We are not truth sayers, in fact, we may be truth slayers. We think if we can keep you in our tidy little churchy circles, doing good and godly “stuff”, if we do the funny but not distractingly funny, little opening story and the three biblical points and the two hymns and three praise songs we can keep us all in line. Comfortable. Predictable. In control. Tithing.
The real truth is that Jesus is the Truth, but he’s also a bit out of control, in an orderly way, of course. Another problem is that his order doesn’t quite look like our version of order. And when he teams up with that Holy Spirit he can get downright wiggy. I suspect it may be partly to entertain his Dad, watching us act all squirrely and out of our paradigms and let’s just admit it, out of control.
When asked, or even when not asked but in just want to tell you mode, I like to say let’s err on the side of the Holy Spirit. Let’s get wild. Let’s have a party. Let’s love hard and out of the box and on the unlovely. I’m pretty sure God is not looking down on us worshipping up a storm and saying to Jesus, “Look at them. What fools. I wanted them in their Sunday best and in their proper seats (which are their’s until they die) and trying to pretend they know where to find the book of Philemon. I wanted some of them to be getting a nap. I wanted the worship music to last 15 minutes, the sermon to take 30 minutes and the offering to take the last 15. Look at this foolishness. Must be the devil.”
Some experts say that the reason millennials are staying away from church is that we’ve become too much like entertainment, and they can get entertained about six ways from Sunday. I, the 59ish millennial wanna be, think maybe, just maybe, that we are trying too hard. Trying too hard to be cool. Trying too hard to not be trying too hard to be cool. So, I have an idea. Let’s just follow Truth, get a little wild, and have a good old time. Let’s take our eyes off the clock and if the other church people get in line in front of us at the Sunday Buffet, let’s get Chinese take out. And then let’s go back to “church” and get a little wiggy all over again. Hey, we might spill some Egg Fu Young on our fancy church clothes, but we might, yes we just might, spill a little Holy Spirit right on out the door and into our neighborhoods. And He’s pretty tasty. Kind of like the Bread of Life.