I keep thinking that someone somewhere is going to address this issue. And I'm sure that someone has: I just can't find the article. But either way, I'm not gonna hold my peace any longer. I am going to speak up for the weary, beaten down, tired, fatigue-struck Christian. Or as he/she could be called: the "over-churched."
Church staffs; this article is dedicated to you. It is an appeal from your flocks for mercy and compassion. And the remedy is quite simple: your endless church activities are killing the saints.
I am puzzled by something. If I am not mistaken, most church offices are now shutting down on Friday as well as Saturdays. This is a good idea. Sundays are work days for church staffs, especially the minister. So, closing down office on Friday and Saturday is a good idea.
But I am still perturbed at something. A church staff may have the power to shut down the office on Friday and Saturday: but can the average member of your church shut down his business so he/she can get two good days rest?
Of course not.
Most of your members are off work on Saturday and Sunday. And often times there's those ridiculous, meaningless men's breakfasts where we have to hear yet another speaker who has little to say and, before you know it, Sunday is here and we're back at it again...
WHEN DO GOD'S PEOPLE GET TO REST?
On Sundays you get out of church at noon. You have jut enough time to get lunch and maybe grab a quick nap. But before you know it, you have to be back at church by 4:00 or so because there's another meeting you need to be at if you want to be "on God's good side..."
This is ridiculous. Somebody needs to stop the madness.
And I'm puzzled by something else, too. Why do churches advertise how "family centered" they are when in reality the very opposite is true? Confused? Well, answer this: if you are that "family centered" why do you have endless activities at church that remove opportunities for families to be together?
Look around at your people. Can you not see how weary they are? Of course you don't feel that way if you're part of the Sunday morning worship. You get to participate. But that's not the case for most of your flock. Most of them will occupy pews and "watch the show." Very little participation is required - only endurance.
Dear pastor, please don't be offended. I speak on behalf of most of your flock, who, incidentally, are very tired. They work 40 hours or more every week and they crave some time with their family. Why not given them a break and clear the way for some family time?
After I left the pastorate I struggled for months with church attendance. I complained to my wife one day that I was so "bored" with church now that I was not the pastor. "Of course you are," she replied. "When you were pastor you were the show: we all had to listen to you. Now you know how the rest of us feel..."
Pastor - church staff - if you are going to shut down the offices on Fridays and Saturdays so you can have more free time, why not show some mercy toward your congregation and clear some time for them to be with their families?
For instance, why have church on Sunday night? Seriously. If the next day is a school day, don't families need to prepare for that? If the next day is a work day for mom and dad, perhaps they need some "down time" before the week begins. If you have Sunday night services, you are giving no time to "chill" and get ready for the upcoming week.
Have some mercy...
Is it really that necessary to have 4 and 5 Bible studies a week at the church? My goodness, if that's the case, when do your people find time to "be alone with the Lord?"
Give'm a break...
I have see more fatigue than ever before the last few years. And it is high time for church staffs to be more considerate of their members. They work hard, long hours, and many of them are past fatigue. Some are on the brink of a heart attack, induced by stress and fatigue.
The law of the Sabbath is still in place. People are weary, over-worked, struck with fatigue. Give'm a real Sabbath...