Monday, December 27, 2010

Christian cliques

Read great blog posts about them here and here.

I was going to write a post railing about their existence in our church and how I have noticed them more as our church has grown larger. After I read these posts, I realised that I have been just as bad at actively seeking out new people and making sure they feel included at church.

It's much easier every week at church to talk only to the people we know, that we feel comfortable with and have things in common with. And it's okay to have close friendships in church. We need to have close friends who will hold us accountable for changing our sinful natures to become more Christlike. But it is not okay to be exclusive and to avoid inviting new people into existing friendship groups. This is not the kind of behaviour that Jesus demonstrated to us.

I think these posters are right. Cliquish behaviour stems from selfishness and looking out for our own interests (and I would also suggest our popularity) rather than the interests of others. And this kind of behaviour will not win others to Christ's family. In fact, I think it can be a real turn off to newcomers and may even drive them away from our church.

I need to examine my own behaviour in this regard and pray about it. I thought Ben's warning was good...if you don't think you are in a clique, then you probably are....

1 comment:

Deb L said...

Yep, definitely an issue in Christian circles. Although in some of the churches we've worshipped with it's hard to scrap up enough people to form a clique! :)

But I did think, after I read Ben's article, that some allowance needs to be made for the introvert in church circles. I'm an extrovert and meeting new people and chatting is not a problem at all for me. My husband, however, is a completely different kettle of fish. If he were judged by Ben's standard of "how many friends have you made" lately, he'd be a flat-out failure. But he's not! He's just a different personality to me. For him, talking to only two or three people at church is a busy morning.