Just the other day, Nate asked me if I had seen the “Cowboy Church” just off the highway. I was not sure exactly what he was talking about; we often read the church signs posted within every mile here in the south and I had not seen one referring to cowboys. He clarified, “No, it’s The Cowboy Church, cowboys welcomed.” Mmm-Kay. I couldn’t help but recall The Cowboy Church when our local paper featured an article on Skate Church.
I must say this really raises some questions for me. Here in the south, contemporary services have been frowned upon for years by the older generations. At one time, I did not really have a problem with contemporary services. In all honesty, I enjoyed the atmosphere, especially relaxing in my favorite jeans while I listened to a speaker and had refreshments. As time has gone on, I have really noticed how many of these services have trailed away from the true purpose of “church.” The message is being lost and the focus is about drawing the world in by looking like the world. It seems a lot of Christian churches are becoming more in tune with social sciences than biblical teaching.
Let’s go back to Skate Church. I have absolutely no problem with skaters. I wish I could do it myself. But how do you build a ministry around skating? On the website, I see a pretty fair message on a daily devotional and the About Us tab makes a lot of sense. The building the kids use for skating belongs to the church and there is a pro shop inside for the skaters to get parts if needed. I am really trying to be open-minded, but I can’t help but think of Jesus in the synagogue being so angry. “It is written, ‘My house shall be called a house of prayer,’ but you have made it a den of thieves.” (Matthew 21:13) When we are in a time of fellowship with other believers that we call “church,” shouldn’t we be worshipping? Shouldn’t these young boys and girls be spending the two hours in God’s Word instead of skating for an hour and a half and having a “short message” presented? How are we teaching our young people to live godly lives and to make God part of your day all day?
I am completely for reaching out and missions, but I don’t believe Jesus changed the synagogues or His message to reach those in the world. His sheep knew then and still know His voice. I have never been to Skate Church so I can’t make a pointed judgment. I just don’t understand why we have to tell cowboys their welcome to come to church and why church has to be changed to fit your desires. Missions to me are more about going into the world to find His sheep and pull them out, not make our place of worship like the world.
In all honesty, shouldn’t we all be spending a little less time skating, (or blogging or watching TV or whatever) and a little more time in God’s Word and praying?