You have just enjoyed a nice hot shower and you’re off to work. Little do you know that a nasty reminder of that shower is lingering on your shower walls and will remain there until it is cleaned off. Over time, that reminder will build up a nasty film called soap scum and will make your shower look awful and may even help to attract mildew, mold and bacteria. You may not shutter to step back into your own scum covered shower but you probably don’t want to enter another person’s scum. Right? If you go to a hotel and the shower is covered in soap scum, you probably wouldn’t get in. Even if it doesn’t hurt you, it’s nasty.
Funny thing about soap scum . . it’s left over soap – the exact same stuff that you clean yourself with. The other thing is, you need to clean it off with more soap! Very odd.
Christians are often the same. We worship, sing, dance and experience revival. We walk away refreshed and feeling clean. The next time we need renewal we often return to that same “shower”. What we think is a wonderful shower is now left over soap scum – we may not acknowledge it but others are certainly turned off by it.
The old hymns – they still bring life to some but you really need to learn to appreciate them and how to sing them properly. Try explaining to a young urban youth how hymns relate to their lives and they may only see soap scum.
I grew up with Jesus Music, long hair, torn jeans and concerts. This may appeal to some “wanna be hippies” but doesn’t really hold current for the new generations. I love Larry Norman but his songs still talk about communists coming and the Vietnam War.
Listen to some worship music from the 80’s or 90’s and you may just quickly turn it off.
None of these worship styles are wrong. But they may be lingering by Christians that were once blessed by them and they keep re-using them over and over again because they brought life at one point. It’s not just music. It’s our church buildings. Style of teaching. Leadership. Programs. We take a life giving “spiritual shower” and let it build into “scum” for generations to come.
If you were a current teenager or just say a “non church goer” would you enter your church building and relate to the program and teachings? Would you find life or “scum residue”? Are you trying to minister in 1980 terms? 1915 terms? Even 2010 terms? Culture is changing rapidly everyday but we continue to use old methods.
The Gospel of Jesus never changes but language and culture does. Imagine running a church by Pilgrim standards today!
If you want to sing hymns or old Bible Camp songs – that’s fine. Sing your heart out. But don’t expect your neighbors to join in. They may not be interested in your . . . well you get it.
Matthew 9:16-18 (NIV)
16 “No one sews a patch of unshrunk cloth on an old garment, for the patch will pull away from the garment, making the tear worse. 17 Neither do people pour new wine into old wineskins. If they do, the skins will burst; the wine will run out and the wineskins will be ruined. No, they pour new wine into new wineskins, and both are preserved.”