At a gathering at my daughter’s house last night, I was engaged by at least three of the twenty-somethings into conversation about theology (broadly speaking). Now, maybe I have a flashing neon GodGeek sign on my forehead but I think this indicates a yearning for the Divine which is not being fed by the church. Why not? Isn’t the purpose of the church to walk with one another in our journeys of faith? Sadly, I think too many in the church think the purpose is to give the answers to the “heathen,” to the “unchurched,” to the unenlightened. The Good News is not that followers of Jesus have all the right answers. The Good News is that an extravagantly loving God created us as minds (to think, to learn, to communicate), as bodies (to sense, to express ourselves, to physically be with one another), and as social-spiritual people (to relate with the Divine in one another and all of creation).
The American church in particular is intertwined with American culture in such unhealthy ways. It's about the building, the institution – keeping the building up because "what will the neighbors think?" Keeping up with the "things" of the church because of our consumerism. Keeping up with the numbers of the church because of our inbred sense of competition and scarcity of resources.When in truth, all people really want is a companion to share their walk, talk about God, Jesus, the why of the world. That is evidenced by your conversations with spiritually alert and hungry people.