I teach a Sunday School class of mostly boys. Before we get into the lesson for the morning I like to ask each kid how their week was and invite them to share some of its highlights, as I pass out fruit gummies and little bottles of water.These highlights are more often than not, them sharing what happened in Fortnite. I doubt many grown-ups, their parents included, ever care about hearing of their Fortnite adventures.
They throw gummies into the air and catch them in their mouths as they tell me their newest Fornite scores, their best kills, and their latest rankings.And it happens every week because they know that I care about it all, and in caring about it, I care about them.
Fortnite is my way of connecting with a classroom of little boys.
The Church Connecting with People
This got me to thinking quite a lot about connection. Jesus is all about connection. But we, as the Church, don’t always succeed at connecting with people just exactly as they are and no matter where they are at in life. I look around so many times and see people that the Church accidentally and other times purposely disconnects from and I don’t believe that’s Jesus’ heart at all. That disconnection with people says plainly: we don’t care about you.
Jesus Connecting with People
Jesus connected with people in so many ways. He didn’t just have sermon after sermon, or lesson after lesson, He would connect by living every-day life with them, from breaking the bread, and pouring the wine at meals, and going fishing with them (remember that was work, not pleasure), to just talking and hanging out with them and listening to them. He connected with them no matter who they were, or where they were at in their lives, or how old they were. He cared about them and they kept coming back to Him because He did.
As a Church maybe we could connect better with people, young and old, inside of the church and outside of it, if we simply lived life together. If we focused a little less on the sermons and the lessons, and shared more meals together and helped each other out and talked and listened and hung out with people— no matter who they are, where they’re at in life, and just exactly as they are.
The question we need to keep asking ourselves is this: How can we care for, and connect better with people inside and outside of the Church today?
I don’t have all the answers but as for me, I’m going to keep on passing out gummies and little water bottles and talking about Fortnite.