28 Oct Can church be both missional and attractional?
Alan Hirsch in The Forgotten Ways says, “The major challenge to the viability of Christianity is not Buddhism…nor is it Islam…nor the New Age… All of these are challenges, no doubt, but I have come to believe that the major threat to the viability of our faith is that of consumerism.”
Yes, Paul, we are pastoring people who are consumers first and Christians second (or third, fourth…) Willow Creek says that their mission is to turn irreligious people into fully devoted followers of Christ. I wonder if we should say that our mission is to turn American consumers into authentic sacrificial Christ followers? Is that possible when we seem to be “selling” Jesus as “the way to have all your needs met” and our church as the place where you can find it? Is it possible to attract consumers to church without appealing to their consumer instincts? And if we are appealing to their consumer instincts, how can we expect them to turn into missional, cross-bearing, loving-the-least-of-these kinds of people?
Can a church be both attractional and missional? I hope so and I’m looking for examples.