I guess I should have expected it, but I just was not ready for the commercial I heard recently. My family and I were driving out of town and listening to a popular radio station. Suddenly, an attention-grabbing voice asked the audience (assumed to be mostly younger people) if they were tired of the same old church experience.

He asked if they were tired of the atmosphere, then described a flashier, more feeling-oriented “church” service. He capped off his description by proudly proclaiming, “This ain’t yo momma’s church!” The commercial continued, describing several things that might appeal to young people; loud, modern music, lights (apparently, flashing and pulsing) to go with the music, and a modern “feel good” message to tie it all together. Each description was followed by the same, attention-grabbing proclamation—“This ain’t yo momma’s church!”

No, I had to concede it certainly did not sound like the church my “momma” attended. The congregation my mother attended was concerned more about what God said about worship and expects from worship than what I or anyone else may like (John 4:24). The congregation my mother attended and the one in which I “grew up” was more concerned with the kind of music the Bible specified (Ephesians 5:19Colossians 3:16) than the kind the world wanted to hear (Galatians 1:10). The congregation my mother and father attended was more concerned about sound doctrine (1 Timothy 1:3Titus 2:1) than some message that would grab audience attention but not completely teach God’s Word (Acts 20:272 Timothy 4:1-5).

Consumerism threatens to consume our culture. Everybody claims to be able to give us what we want and to fulfill every need we feel. But what about when we have needs that we do not feel? And what about our children’s children—what will it take for people to appeal to them to be different from their “momma’s church?” How far will it go? (2 Timothy 2:2).

The problem lies in the assumption made in the premise of the commercial—that the church should be made to fit us instead of us fitting the church. Jesus built one church (Matthew 16:18Ephesians 1:22-23Ephesians 4:4). Men have built many to fit their desires. We should be more concerned about what Christ wants than what we (or our mothers) want. —adapted, Lance Cordle

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