I’ve always been amused by the idea of people “church shopping.” Ask somebody, “So where do you go to church?”
They say, “We’re not anywhere right now. Just kinda shopping around.”
Shopping around? Really? What a great concept. Shopping is different that “searching” or “seeking” or “thirsting” for some truth that makes sense. Shopping is...something else.
Whenever somebody says they’re “shopping around for churches” I always imagine them suckin’ on a big fruit smoothie, walking through a huge mall filled with churches. Each “mall church” has a wall-sized mall store window in the front with signs in them advertising their latest and greatest spiritual feature:
“Try Our Padded Pews! Now With Massage Rollers!”
“Join Now, No Tithing Till 2014!”
“Cool Music, Easy Sermons, Great Food...Why Pray Anywhere Else?!”
They shop til they find something they like, something they’re comfortable with. Others kinda mix and match: some music from this one, some teaching from that, maybe a little decorating from that one - those types NEVER really land anywhere, but are forever “shopping”.
Yes, shopping is different from searching or seeking or thirsting...it’s more casual, pickier, more consumer-friendly. Shopping says, “What’dya got? Make me laugh. Entertain me. If I like what I see, maybe we can make a deal. If not, I'll move on till something strikes my fancy.”
But searching, seeking, thirsting...that’s... different.
As together we stand and sing.