I’m tired of hype.
More often than not hype does not live up to expectations. Even if it does, hype is over in an instant.
Take Mixed Martial Arts as example. Fights are hyped up so that people want to watch. The hype drives up pay-per-view buy-ins. Ultimately the fight card is usually a let down. Not that there aren’t good fights. Not that watching wasn't enjoyable. But actuality did not equal hype. Not when fights that people were looking forward to get dropped from the card. Not with fights that last 20 seconds. Not when fights are so close that there is talk of it being rigged.
Church is just like this.
Churches have bought into the hype-machine. They believe that they have to hype everything up to get people to be involved. Every Bible study is the greatest, best teaching ever. Every new preaching series is the series that will change your life forever so you better not miss it. Yet, when we get there it's the sermon he preached 3 years ago with the same stories and a different name. We tell people that if they know God their lives will change forever but they don't think that we have ever changed.
People have learned that they shouldn't believe the hype.
People have seen that they only hype they should believe is the terrible things that people do in the name of God: Protesting the death of solders, blaming floods on sexuality. There is rarely a reason to believe anything positive. For every life changed for the better there seems to be three hurt. When a mother mourns for her son a church is seen spitting on her. When a city tries to rebuild there is a church scorning them. For every abused wife there is a church saying submit.
I’m tired of the hype. I’m tired of the let downs. I’m tired of waiting for church to be different. I’m tired.
Everyone is better at hype than you. 'They' tell the story better. 'They' make people want to care. But even churches who move past advertising “revivals” for “The Man, The Myth, The Legend: Jesus” still don't live up to the hype. I’m tired of “ignite” and “rejuvenate” conferences. Why do I need to buy your 6-step book that mentions the Bible once? The early church counted it as a blessing to be beaten or martyred for Jesus, is that the #blessing you are teaching about? What happened to “we want to help each other get to know Jesus and obey Him a little better?”
Every week Kristal writes a blog about how things don't make sense to her and every week Kristal has the opportunity study with her friends about a topic that relates to God. No hype needed. We come together because we want to, even when we don't feel like it. I know this is happening else where, but why is it not happening more? Why have we exchanged natural relationships for hype?
I guess what I’m trying to say is that I’m tired of church wrapped in fancy wrapping paper but what’s inside is poorly made. The shiny package as turned tarnished and the object inside, broken. Why has little to no time been put into what truly matters?
Until that happens... dear churches, I cannot believe the hype.