Rocking the Boat
I love boats! In a sermon I preached last year (February 2008) I took the time to compare the many different types or styles of boats out there to the many types of churches I see. Below is what I came up with:
- Rubber Raft Church: not a whole lot to it, provides some edification, but really is full of air, which means there’s a lot of talk and philosophizing but it doesn’t do much.
- Cruise Ship Church: Like a Disney or Carnival cruise ship it’s all about the vacation. This church values leisure (Sabbath “rest”), eating, and being entertained.
- Dingy Church: used for “short trips” generally an emotion driven church that lacks substance and depth this church can never take you on the journey God has in mind.
- Competition Ski Boat: flashy, hip, financially well off, church that looks great, and scores some big ministry events every now and then but can’t seem to really have a sustained ministry since the members are comfortable they don’t see the need.
- Canoe church: one or two people or are “paddling” doing all the work of ministry while others applaud their hard work from the shore.
- Paddle Boat church: Hard working, “works” oriented church that cruises around looking at things and people to pass judgment on.
- House Boat church: a church that is all about family, but they never reach anybody else because they only think about themselves.
- Kayak church: this church seeks out the biggest spiritual thrill available – personal spiritual fulfillment is the most important – these church people often church hop – or attend big religious events to get their fix but can never stay with one church long enough to become part of a community.
- Rescue Boat church: a socially conscious church this church is motivated to rescue the most vulnerable and desperate of people. It often lacks enough organizational skill to pull off what it needs to do and it is in constant financial crisis because it can’t turn anyone away.
- Power Boat church: like the classic wooden inboards or the more contemporary “cigar” boats they are made for looks and power – generally located in a religious ghetto next to a major denominational institution where church leaders attend. Full of spectators and people attracted to power but very little gets done for the kingdom.
- Super Yacht church: this church is plush, sophisticated, and equipped with the latest and greatest of technology. It is cushy and lacks nothing except for a real mission that will move it out of the lap of luxury.