Everybody has a different response and reason why our generation and those after us are leaving. They typically point to what’s wrong with the church. It’s not enough Jesus. It’s too much Jesus. It’s not enough holiness. It’s too much holiness. It’s not enough justice. It’s too much justice.
I get the concerns with church in general. But I’d like to offer the flip side of this coin: If the church isn’t what we want it to be, it’s not all the church’s fault. At least part of it is our fault. We can’t talk about the church as if it’s some abstract entity disconnected from us. We are the church.
And here's the truth: The church isn’t perfect. It’s never been perfect. It never will be perfect. So imperfections within the church simply aren’t a good excuse for anyone to leave.
But we leave with our complaints as if we aren’t part of the problem. We’re just a tad bit spoiled. We tend to want everything handed to us. We want change, but it seems many of us don’t want the work that comes with implementing change. So we bounce around, hoping to eventually land in some magical realm where the Pew Fairy has already done all the work to make church exactly what we think it should be.
I hate to pop your balloon, but the Pew Fairy doesn’t exist.
I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again: If you want to bring about change in the church, you can’t do it from the outside looking in. Those who are walking away aren’t helping to fix anything. I’d like to see a few of us suck it up, stop whining about everything that’s wrong, and begin working to implement the change we’re calling for.
The linked article was written by a 35-year-old, but applies equally to those of any age. It's not the pastor's fault, nor any deacon, elder, or resident of the "amen corner."
The "church" isn't a building; it's the people ... and people are flawed. That's why we need God in the first place!
It's everyone's fault, and if your church is unresponsive to requests - or if you left church because it wasn't meeting your needs - then please read the article, and think about what the author says.