The Church Without: The Church Within

Recently, the Barna Group and the Cornerstone Knowledge Network did a survey of young people...you know, the "Millennial" generation (of which, this author is a proud member for what it's worth).  Out of 1000 young adults surveyed, 67% described their ideal church as a "classic" one, while just over 30% described theirs as "trendy".  While this is just a small sample of the survey, the overall picture the survey painted was that young adults valued what one might call a "traditional" church. 

This should not be surprising.  Ultimately, what is important within a congregation is mood and vitality.  If a church comes across as dead, dieing, or lacking purpose, no one...believer or unbeliever, will find that congregation appealing.  From the time of Jesus, being a disciple has always been (at least a bit) about being different.  Should it come as a surprise that seeking people prefer the term "sanctuary" to "auditorium"?  It is as fitting that a church building should stand out from the daily grind just as much as a faithful Christian should stand out from the daily crowd (John 13:35 comes to mind). 

Whether a church building looks like a medieval cathedral or a Starbucks is no more important than whether a Christian is old, young, handsome, or crippled.  Window dressing is not the important thing, but it is the state of affairs within.  Be it the compassionate heart of a single Christian, or the purpose and mission of the butt's in the pews come Sunday.