Should We Be Innovative?

Aug 29, 2007

As I read in blog world I see the argument pop up from time to time, “Should the church be innovative?” To be honest—it surprises me that people are even arguing about this—the answer is HECK YES!

I know there are some people out there who have a problem with churches being innovative, using modern methods to communicate a timeless message. These people claim they HATE the church being “worldly,” yet these same people…

  • Have a blog or website (neither one of which are in Scripture…so that would make them “worldly”) that they use to attack with.
  • Have air conditioner in their homes and…even (GASP) their churches!
  • Used a car (a worldly invention) to go back and forth to church in.
  • Have running water AND electricity in their homes and churches—the Apostle Paul had neither!
  • Have a cell phone in—would Jesus REALLY have used one of those?

You get the point. I think people do not have a problem with innovation…but rather when something that is innovative isn’t in their comfort zone…THAT is when it becomes wrong.

In reading Scripture lately I have came across a couple of passages, Isaiah 42:9 and Isaiah 43:18-19, in which God basically says, “I am an innovative God…I am doing some brand new things…STOP focusing on the past!”

Now, according to Genesis 1:27 we are created in the image of God—it would seem to stand that we should be innovative as well.

I personally think that one of the main reasons for a lack of innovation in the church is laziness—people just don’t want to work. Yep—innovation takes hard work—and God is honored by that.

Let me ask a question—what if I came home every day at the same time and told Lucretia, “I love thee, I truly love thee—every hour I love thee—there is none more beautiful than you.” She might think that is nice the first time…but after about the third or fourth time she would wonder whether or not I really meant it…and by week number two she would know that this little poem was merely a ritual that I was going through to make me feel better about myself!

BUT…if I am fresh and creative in ways I express my love to her then the relationship says exciting and adventurous—not some ritualistic, boring partnership that is held together through insincere forms of expression and laziness.

We should worship Jesus with passion and honor…and in new and fresh ways. I am NOT against traditional styles of worship as long as they are sincere. However, I have been in way too many services where the hymns are sang with about as much passion as I just had when I changed Charisse’s diaper and then taunted as “the only way” to do church—which just is not a biblically based conclusion!

That is why I say that the church should be the most innovative place on the planet…we have the HOLY SPIRIT of GOD, who is pretty flippin’ creative, that fuels us…and I think not only should the church learn from the people who are reaching people (marketing) but also we should be so innovative and effective that they should learn from us as well.

One of my prayers lately is that God will continue to fill me with creative ideas and surround me with creative people…and He is doing it. I am excited about some of the steps we are going to be taking here at NewSpring in the next 12 months—these are exciting times and there are thousands and thousands of people to be reached with a message that never changes—but the methods that must!!!