We have new décor at our church and I don’t like it. I’m not going to describe it because to do so would bring out my long knives. Just let me quote Mark Ruffalo’s Bruce Banner character from “The Avengers,” “Well, this is pretty … terrible.
I’m not going to be one of those people who huffs out the doors over the color of the new carpet or choir robes. By-the-bye, for over 30 years I’ve heard about those sorts of epic struggles in the Body of Christ and have yet to see one. Pettiness has been a feature of every church I’ve attended but most splits have been ignited by differing doctrine, and once theology was the detonator.
Anyway, for a long time I’ve disliked the music at our church. Church music has been shifting for a while and I haven’t shifted with it. My problem is that I am not musical. I have little in the way of rhythm, and cannot carry a tune. I forget the words unless they are printed out and I’m just too busy actually thinking about the words and their meaning to try and keep time. Let’s just say that praise and worship for me is difficult. We have never been a hymnal kind of church—those I do well with, figures—and so have always used projections systems. Over a year ago we started using backgrounds with motion. These were a problem for me as my eyes are lousy, which means the movement plays tricks with the lettering. I was/am also distracted trying to find the point at which the movement starts to loop. This coupled with the Jesus-is-my-boyfriend nature of current worship music, and you see I’m really in trouble.
Back to the décor. With the lights–yes, there are lights–and new textured surfaces, there is even more to see. The lights on the new features stay on during the sermon so I have even more to distract me.
Here’s the crazy, upside-down part of this: our pastor’s sermons are excellent.
Most people have complaints about dry, irrelevant preaching. Not so here. I have nothing negative to say in that regard.
My problem is the the falderal that surrounds the sermons. For me, it’s like being a fan of chocolate and only being able to get liver-wrapped truffles. Ugh.
We have no plans to leave because every church has it’s problems and I am comfortable with this set and have no interest in getting used to those of others.
My daughter just pointed out some wisdom that very much applies to my situation: “Follies and nonsense, whims and inconsistencies do divert (distract) me I own, and I laugh at them whenever I can.” – Jane Austen.
I am famous for saying you learn the most from reading badly written books. When reading a bad book you learn what not to do with characters and plot, you learn what you really dislike in storytelling, and when there is a good turn-of-phrase it stands out brilliantly. I suppose I should be prepared to learn what really matters to me in a church setting. I think I’m going to be learning and laughing a lot.