Q: What am I talking about?
A: This website being promoted by these full page ads they have taken out in magazines like Time, Newsweek, and National Geographic. Someone behind these has their feet on the ground where Americans are living today... and I'm guessing some money too.
The official UMC website indicates this is the goal of these ads:
- A print advertisement directs people to www.10thousanddoors.org, a new website launched April 20 as part of The United Methodist Church's Rethink Church awareness campaign. The site encourages people to think about church as a doorway to service in the world. (primarily those who are 18-34 and unchurched or with a negative church experience is their target)
I grew up in the Methodist Church as a kid. I taught a seminar for Youth Specialties, hosted by a UMC church in Texas last weekend. I've attended the local Methodist church in our community and liked what I heard and saw. I surfed their official theology on their national website and I can't find much to disagree with, though I know some of the practices of certain communities with this label outside the doors I would not support.
I attended a Christian Missionary Alliance church in high school and did my internships there too. I attended a Baptist church in college. I served in an Evangelical Free Church for 11 years in Fremont. I now work in a non-denominational church with Calvary Chapel roots. I'm officially a denominational mutt.
The resulting bottom line is I don't give a royal rip what name you stick outside of the door of your building. If I can walk through it and find the conviction and truth of God's words, the love and grace of a God-fearing community, and the overwhelming presence of the Holy Spirit, then we're good. I really have ZERO denominational loyalties.
As a result, I really like what these Ads stand for- especially if they are not merely social justice ploys. I think that the church is losing ground in the culture we live in and if God's people are going to make a difference, then we better wake up and leave our four walls and start being real salt and light to the world around us that people can actually taste and see or we're going to loose even more ground and be even less the people of God than many "churches" already are today.
For what it's worth, I hope a lot of people join this UMC movement and find
- a real, life altering connection with their Creator through Jesus Christ
- they are part of a lot of churches with thousands of denominational doors that are doing this too.
- the opportunity to join God as the ones who spread the Spirit's influence in practical redemptive ways all over the planet.
PS.... if you really want to hear what's behind this thing, watch this 9 minute video explaining, what, why, who, when, and how this is all planned out by the UMC. This is a fully orchestrated event.