Last night I accidentally looked at a bunch of websites for ‘church creatives’ and websites of ‘creative churches’. I came to two conclusions:
- A lot of churches are very serious about professionalism in their operations and presentation.
- Many many many many many many many many many many many churches are merely corporations selling religious-based entertainment and merchandise.
This morning I read a blog post by Michael Rosen about how, in his opinion, Michael Gove et al are working hard and fast to deliver the education system to the marketplace, thus pitting schools against one another in a struggle for rankings and (often) profit.
Remember how blind faith in capitalism led us into the rotten economic situation we’re in today? Remember how blind faith in capitalism nearly caused the the actual meltdown of the world’s economy in 2008?
And yet this anti-community, materialistic -ism is the one to which we are entrusting our children’s education and our spiritual well-being. Are we insane greedy fools?
But a more helpful way of looking at it might be to say that we are so busy swimming we don’t notice the water is full of poison. This way of thinking could easily lead to contemplation of Ephesians 6:12: For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.
The problem is not so much the megachurch pastor with the perfectly whitened smile and the promise of wonderful everything if you buy into his brand of Jesus®. It’s not so much Michael Gove and the Tories. It’s that we’ve accepted the powerful -ism of the day as a given. It doesn’t have to be. But Paul promises a struggle for those who try to live another way.