12 Church Things that Make Little Sense to Me

So, I’m probably writing a bit out of frustration today. I’ve seen these things in churches over the past year, and they make little sense to me: 

  1. Building facilities for “outreach,” but then limiting usage to church members. Outreach to only church members is not outreach.
  2. Not teaching spiritual disciplines, but then getting frustrated with church members who don’t read the Word or pray. Why should we hold them accountable for what we’ve not taught them?
  3. Preaching the love of God, but only for people who look like us and speak our language. That’s an unbiblical sense of God’s love.
  4. Tolerating small group leaders who cannot lead and cannot teach. I’m amazed that we leave in place leaders who’ve led their group into decline.
  5. Accepting new members without asking questions about their Christian testimony. If membership assumes conversion, we need to hear the stories of potential new members.
  6. Leaders getting angry when an evangelical church plant starts down the road. Protecting our turf is hardly good for the kingdom.
  7. Voting on I’m a congregationalist, but that position doesn’t assume that we must vote on every matter.
  8. Seeing young people as only the “future” of the church. If they’re only our future, they won’t likely wait until then in order to lead.
  9. Leaders affirming demographic research and contextualization on the mission field, but rejecting both as man-centered in North America. Gaining this knowledge is as important in crossing the street as it is in crossing oceans.
  10. Choosing songs that are almost impossible to sing. I’m not a musician, but I can usually tell when no one’s singing a difficult song.
  11. Giving unfaithful members positions of influence to encourage them to be faithful. Nothing in the Bible gives us this prerogative.
  12. Not confronting continually divisive people. It seems we almost cower in fear, which only fuels their power.

What other church things make little sense to you?


  • thomasbrianc says:

    #7 really resonates with me. When I asked if we could start have intercessory prayer at my former church, I was told by the pastor that he will take it to conference meeting so the church could vote on it! I was flabbergasted, thinking “the church has to vote on whether we should pray or not???”

    • Yarn Collector says:

      I mentioned praying for an upcoming event and was told someone was in charge of that! They would take care of that. I thought Jesus was.

  • Jerry says:

    Hey Chuck,
    I smiled when I read your ‘meanderings’ today…They are certainly thought-provoking and on-point….Here are my thoughts (I am a musician)….
    “Could we with in the oceans fill, or were the skies of parchment made,
    Were every stalk on earth a quill, and every man a scribe by trade –
    To write the things that make little sense which so many churches do,
    Would drain the oceans, and reveal the things
    Which so many WISH were true.”
    OBVIOUSLY, your words struck a chord with me….How about these (which I know your readers will take high offense to:

    A church calls a pastor to lead – and then won’t follow (today, so they say, it takes 7 years – I’ll guess Peter, Paul, Timothy, and Titus, are glad they weren’t called like this)
    A church calls a pastor to help them ‘grow’ – but they tell him he cannot change a thing (I.E. programs, personnel, or _______)
    Saying, “We want to reach, teach, & train young people (children through young adults), but we want them to respond in the way WE RESPONDED 40 years ago.
    Saying we care about our community, but not have a presence in the community.
    Allowing the same person (or people) to regularly harm the fellowship, not dealing with it, and calling that ‘love.’

    Sadly, the list is endless. I pray that, as God’s people, we can come together, under the banner of the Great Commandment and Great Commission – and right our ship. Thanks for all you do.

  • Josh Droke says:

    Thank you for being willing to call the church on things others won’t. Knowing I’m not alone in these frustration made me smile this morning. I don’t say that from a sour perspective. I really believe we can identify these things in ourselves and get better – that the church will get better. We are going to be an even greater force of Jesus’ love in our world. As the current leaders of the church build on the wisdom of those who’ve gone before and work to overcome these frustrations, God is going to empower and move in grace. Beautiful, difficult, Kingdom-making things are ahead of us!

  • Robin G Jordan says:

    “Leaders getting angry when an evangelical church plant starts down the road. Protecting our turf is hardly good for the kingdom.” The vineyard is the Lord’s, not ours. He can send workers where and whenever he chooses and he can reward them how he chooses. As Jesus points out, we have no right to become angry or raise objections. If we slack off instead of tending the vines and gathering the fruit, we cannot complain if the Lord sends more diligent workers to take our place.

  • Denise says:

    Telling people who are living in sin that they are not welcome in that church because they are living in sin.
    While other sinners are hiding their sinful issues and singing in the choir.

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