“Three things go up in recessions: church attendance, bar attendance, and movie attendance. Why those three things? They represent the three things people are looking for: meaning, connection, and relief”
And all three we can actually find in God.
People apparently derive meaning from going to church. Those of us converted know the reasons why. For the newcomer or the person coming back into the fold, church is different (and needs to be) from almost any other place or activity a human being can visit or do.
I recall re-entering the church years ago, seeking and finding. Finding wasn’t a function of achieving joy and happiness; it was a need, a desperate and urgent need. Peace and relief were what I was seeking--not to worship the Most High, or feel the ecstatic feeling of the anointing of the Holy Spirit--that came later.
People apparently go to pubs to become connected. I always found nightclubs to be very seedy places--not much ‘connection’ was to be found in these places. Sure, to be cheered by an inebriated soul could provide a few laughs and some bonding, but it doesn’t really cut it.
How could we go past the connection we can have with God? Many don’t even know this is possible, and if you’re reading this message for the first time... it is not only possible, it can happen any time you like. God is within you. God is within each and every one of us. And he never leaves.
This is a connection most of us never even notice or make even the slightest time for.
God waits patiently for us. Your move...
People apparently go to the movies for relief--the relief of a few hours denial if that fits. Sure, going to the movies is not always about denial; there are times when we need authentic relief and cinemas provide a great medium for this.
But too much relief-seeking in escapism points us to a much deeper and insidious problem.
The best source of relief, as indicated above, is God. The best form of relief is seeking his authentic, healing presence. God’s not burdensome; on the contrary, he relieves us genuinely without us needing to escape.
He relieves us and we don’t need to deny our need anymore. We achieve both things, but only through him who loves us so much that he sacrificed his own Son--for you, for me.
Copyright © 2009, S. J. Wickham. All Rights Reserved Worldwide.