Is your church contemplative or reactive? Brian Zahnd says that most Evangelical American churches are stuck in a reactive mode. That is, they gather every Sunday simply to convince themselves that they are doing everything right while the rest of the world is doing everything wrong. “Sunday after Sunday we are made to feel good about belonging to those who are on the right side of all things religious and political. This is the problem we have when churches are led by religious entrepreneurs instead of contemplative pastors.” Religious entrepreneurs, Zahnd argues, are church leaders whose primary focus is getting numbers up — and to do so, one must say what the people want to hear. To place the emphasis on numerical growth and popular appeal, however, leaves the actual spiritual formation of a congregation lacking. Hence, Zahnd suggests that pastors ought to live their lives more like contemplative mystics than like politicians or businesspeople. And to do that, the American entrepreneurial church model might just not work.
Read the full article here.
Pastors, what do you think? Do you feel like your church’s model hinders your ability to live a contemplative spirituality? How important do you think numerical growth really is?
Comment below with your perspectives.