I rarely encounter a normal church member.
Now don’t misread me. My church is full of everyday folks, but I don’t often interact with them in their normal routines. Like most pastors, I see people more on the highs and lows. Nobody has ever called me and said, “Pastor, I ate oatmeal this morning. Nothing much happened at work. I came home, loved on my family, and watched the evening news. I just thought you might want to know.” Most people don’t call when it’s a normal day.
In reality, most of our churches are full of average people with normal lives. Church members, please don’t miss God’s grace in the normality of your routine. Normal days of emails, vacuuming, and PB&Js are amazing blessings. Pastors, don’t let seeing the best and worst of people in their extremes cloud your judgment about who they really are.
Most people just want to raise godly kids, remain faithful, help out their friends and neighbors, and share Christ in their local community. Without a doubt, the creative types in our churches add some much needed flavor. However, the majority of our congregations are not obsessed with the latest trends in fashion, music, and technology. And on any given day, almost everyone—normal or not—hopes to put their kids to bed without an epic meltdown spilling into the morrow.
I believe my congregation would describe normal as faithfulness to a local body, faithfulness to a family, and faithfulness to Christ. I like that kind of normal. But I also want my church to be a culture-creator. I want my people to shape a community. I’m all about churches doing creative things that resonate with the community. In fact, you need to reflect hard if your church doesn’t resonate with the community. No good comes from a church that is consistently at odds with its community.
We need trendsetters in the church to help shape the culture. Skinny jeans and neon are great. But so are overalls. Average people make for an excellent church because they are likely to resonate with the largest group in your community on a personal level. The very definition of average points to what is typical. So bring on more Camry-driving people. Why? Because the church needs you to win the masses for Jesus.
Just don’t call me every day to let me know you ate oatmeal for breakfast.