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I have a confession to make. I have spent my life in church. A preacher’s kid, then a seminary grad. Now, after seven years of house church ministry, my wife and I are embarking on a new chapter. We don’t even know what the chapter is. There is no invitation to another church, no greener pasture that we are making a break for. We have done this thing longer than the average pastor stays at a full-time church ministry.
What we do know is that making a transition, finding a new place, is going to be hard. We both feel like we have some odd angles, some characteristics that make it challenging for us to settle into a new place. She is a raving introvert, while I am an introvert who can act like an extrovert … sort of.
Case - Church - Place - Bunch - Extroverts
And what we find to be the case is that church is a decidedly extroverted place. A bunch of extroverts usually stand up front. By and large, modern worship, church life and leadership values extrovertism over characteristics such as contemplativeness.
And so, as we prepare to embark on a transition we are both kind of dreading, it makes me think of all of the churches I have visited, all of the places I have worshiped (or at least tried to worship). It makes me think of all the reasons that two pretty introverted people have kind of a tough time with church, even though we love it.
Plenty - Hand-raisers - Non-hand-raisers - Standard - Christian
This sounds so innocuous, perhaps it even sounds absurd to you, and yes, there are plenty of hand-raisers and many non-hand-raisers. But the gold standard of interactive Christian worship, the “hand raise,” is something that has never come easily to me. Now, I raised my hands thousands of times in school, often with passion and pleading for the...
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