40+ Adults And The Church / Outgrowing The Congregation?

Is it possible to spiritually "outgrow" a local congregation?It is not only possible, it happens more often than you'd think. One trend I saw in my poll of those over 40 was that a notable percentage of those who'd changed churches or decreased their level of "official" involvement at their present congregation did so because they'd grown past what the church offered.I've met precious few church leaders who believe that anyone could "outgrow" their congregation. Think about it. When was … [Read more...]

40+ Adults And The Church/An Update

Last week, I shared some preliminary results (here and here) and first thoughts (here) about what I was hearing from those who took my quick survey (here) asking those over 40 to reflect about their relationship with the local church. On Monday of this week, Dr. Scot McKnight highlighted the survey on his popular Jesus Creed blog (here). As a result of that exposure, nearly 400 people have now taken the survey. Because many Jesus Creed readers are church leaders, a few of the stats I'd reported … [Read more...]

My Teenager Made Me Finally Grow Up

New parents are often told that giving birth to a baby makes them adults. That 'round-the-clock responsibility for another human is a life-altering shift that pushes us into our next life stage. Responsibility alone didn't transform me into a true adult, but parenting a teenager did.You know you're an adult when you're at a crowded mall with your preteen daughter and debating what to tell her about the adorbs (her word), inappropriate (my word) outfit she's picked out. Is it…? [Read more] … [Read more...]

Pilgrim’s Road Trip #11 – Don’t Have To Live Like A Refugee

We live as exiles. We’re called to be pilgrims.I am journeying through Scripture chronologically, stopping at a few oases along the way, in order to contemplate our exile experience. I’ll also offer some helpful thoughts about how Christ can reshape that identity and reorient our journey so we live as pilgrims. To read earlier posts in the series, click here. * * * * * * * Tom Petty's anthem addressing a lover who clutched her past baggage like a security blanket and lived as though she was … [Read more...]

40+ Adults And The Church / Survey Results #3

Sidelined by loss. Pushed out by politics. Tired of doing, doing, doing. Invisible. Irrelevant.More time = greater availability to serve. Anxious to contribute. Longing to transmit the faith to the next generation.Mutually exclusive sentiments?Not when it comes to the relationship those of us over 40 have with the local church.A week ago, I posted a survey on the topic here. I wasn't sure if I'd get much of a response. I was hoping to hear from maybe 50 of you. As of this … [Read more...]

40+ Adults And The Church / Survey Results #2

The most remarkable part of the survey I posted last week came when I queried respondents about their current level of church involvement, how this current level compared to their involvement 10 years ago, and then asked why they'd answered as they had. To find out what I discovered about the survey's respondents and connections with a local church, click here.At the time of this writing, 163 people had taken the survey. 141 of them answered my question about their level of involvement in a … [Read more...]

40+ Adults And The Church / Survey Results #1

One conversation led to another. And another. And a bunch more after that. The conversations seemed to have a similar theme: "I'm over 40, and I have questions about my relationship with the local church."I'm a question-asker myself, and those conversations led me to wonder if there was something more to these exchanges than merely being a series of unplugged conversations with friends. I decided to put together a short on-line survey to find out. (Click here to have a peek at the … [Read more...]