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Church can be uncomfortable. Whether it’s the awkward meet-and-greet time, the guy with bad breath and sweaty hands who prays for you, or any number of other awkward things that happen in Sunday gatherings, all of us can relate to feeling uncomfortable in a church.
But for some of us the awkwardness is nearly constant. Our churches are certifiably uncomfortable, all the time. This has been my story, and it may be yours.
Consumerism - Culture - Way - Churches - City
What should you do? The consumerism of our culture would tell you to flee, to run the other way. There are at least 10 other churches in your city that will probably be more comfortable for you. But is that really the best option?
No. Discomfort in church can actually be good for you.
Discomfort - Church - Church - Tolerance - Kind
Certainly there is some discomfort that is toxic and should prompt us to leave a church. But often we leave a church too soon, because we have little tolerance for the kind of discomfort that is good for us.
One rarely grows by staying in one’s comfort zone, after all. It’s more often through discomfort than comfort that we’re stretched, challenged, and grown.
Comfort - Zone
One rarely grows by staying in one’s comfort zone.
But that doesn’t mean it’s easy. How do we stick with our uncomfortable church long enough to see this growth happen? How can we endure—no, learn to love—our uncomfortable church in spite of its frustrating imperfections?
Here are four suggestions:
Our default posture with church (as with anything) is me-centered and consumeristic. We think in terms of what we “got out of” the sermon or the worship. How did it “meet me where I’m at”? But this posture makes dealing with discomfort unbearable.
Key - Discomfort - Posture - Ourselves
A key to thriving amid discomfort is shifting our posture away from ourselves.
A key to thriving amid discomfort is shifting our posture away from ourselves. When church becomes...
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