We asked our bloggers to share their biggest dreams for the church. Here’s what they imagine.
Dreaming big has always come easily to me.
As I think about my big dreams for the church, two come to mind. The first is to let go of the past. In so many ways our grasping at the past holds us back from living into the future. We remember how great it was fondly, but forget those times were imperfect. We lose sight of how amazing it is going to be when we let go, and really let God lead us into the future. Now, I don’t mean just throwing away our past. We can honor it and celebrate the good times! More often than not, our relationship with the past is trying to get back to it. We cannot go back to our past, to the glory days when more people came to church. I believe there is a future where more people will be in worship, but it will look entirely different than it did when attendance peaked for us as a denomination or individual congregations. It is good to be deeply rooted, but if we put too much pressure on those roots, we will crush them and they won’t be able to bring forth new life.
My second big dream is that any buildings we own would be bustling community centers full of people and serving the community. So many of our buildings sit empty all week long. They drain our budgets with repairs, and that holds us back from serving our communities. I imagine a world where our buildings are full of afterschool programs for kids of all socio-economic backgrounds, full of food pantries, shelters, hubs for social services and laughter. Since we are dreaming here, no one ever complains about the mess left behind be another group, no one worries that people come for food but not for worship. I dream of places that are full of life! The life we are called to in Jesus, where love binds us together and we work toward bringing the kin-dom here.
REBECCA GRESHAM-KESNER is pastor at Faith Presbyterian Church in Medford, New Jersey. Outside of church and family life, you can find her in nature, finding fun ways to be creative or asking awkwardly deep questions of people she just met.