Growing up being a Christian wasn’t “cool”. Young people and new Christians today are pretty lucky to have Hillsong United, Planetshakers, Jesus Culture, Young & Free, etc etc. I know Jesus’s message is timeless but growing up in the Church was more or less, boring honestly and there was not a huge focus on modernity or speaking in a way that younger people could understand. There were no youth groups in my area, most of the people going to church were double my age or older, and you knew if you invited someone to church there was a better chance of them falling asleep than asking to come with you again. I don’t name-drop these groups because they are “trendy” but because they incorporate the language and feel of the present and aren’t dated or disconnected from what’s happening today. I think that’s huge. We are a generation connected to technology and largely very expressive/artistic so why wouldn’t it be a good idea to reflect that in the Church and use those passions and gifts to reach people who speak the same language?
But more to the point.
When I saw this image I thought more specifically about again, the comparison I often feel as a participant in the contemporary Church. There are so many creative types and there is a tendency I think to fit into that mold. A brief example is Instagram. I’ve noticed in my church there is a tendency for conformity when posting pictures. Granted, maybe this is just my perception, but I’ve noticed a lot of people post the same kinds of pictures, take the same kinds of photos with friends, and write the same kinds of captions. Maybe that’s normal and reflective of our particular Church culture, but there are many ways to reflect Christ that don’t need to be carbon-copies of what everyone else is doing. Don’t get me wrong, these images are beautiful, almost commercial/professional magazine-level portraits and landscapes, but sometimes I feel like there is a desire to fit in, or dress like everyone else, or have all the same skills as everyone else and quite frankly that’s not the point. We are all made in the likeness of God but if God is unfathomable, expansive in his wonder and talent, then as His children we can feel free to be unique and reflect an array of talents and beauty that doesn’t have to be quantified or contained according to what “everyone else is doing”. I never want to strive to be a mirror of other Christians, I am called to be like Christ. And so are you.
Photo Credit: Found on heartprintsofgod.com