While having lunch last week with a pastor friend, I was reminded once again that the “tried and true” is always better than the “latest and greatest.” Our conversation reminded me that just because something is trendy doesn’t mean it is better.
A perfect example of something being tried and true is the concept of belonging. Being a disciple of Jesus Christ has meant belonging to a local body of believers for over two thousand years! Regardless of cultural trends, I think it safe to say that people have a need to belong today as much as they ever did.
The irony in this is that I regularly see articles and blogs stating that joining a church is no longer relevant to today’s culture. Hello? Who says belonging is no longer relevant? The Word of God certainly says it is. In fact, when Jesus called His very first disciples, He said, “Come and follow me.” Help me understand what part of following Jesus does not involve a commitment to belong?
If belonging is no longer relevant to today’s culture, then Facebook would be a flop. Twitter would have never made it. Snapchat would be a bust. Trust me- people do want to belong. They may or may not want to belong to the Body of Christ, but let me assure you they do want to belong. People still want to be a part of something bigger than themselves. People still join things and become members of groups they care about.
Maybe our problem today is not that people no longer want to belong, but that we want to belong to the wrong things?
The next time you wonder if belonging is still relevant today, just look around and see how many people are wearing their favorite college football team’s jersey. I think you will conclude by the number of jerseys being worn that belonging is still relevant in our culture. If only we wanted to belong to the Church of Jesus Christ as much as we do our favorite sports team.
Being a disciple of Jesus has always meant being committed to His mission and movement. If you are serious about being a disciple of Christ, then make a commitment to a local church. You already committed to the universal Church, now you need to be committed to a local expression of Christ’s Church.
The latest and greatest trends today might not include membership in a local church, but the tried and true principles of Jesus make the value of belonging as important today as it has ever been.
If you want to learn more about the tried and true principles of being and building disciples, contact impactdisciples.com for more information and free resources.