What Would Jesus Blog?

Tag: !Audacious

!AUDACIOUS CITY CHURCH

by on Feb.08, 2009, under Uncategorized

Yes, there’s a reason the title’s all in capitals! Cat and I went there this morning…it was an experience to say the least. Both of us left feeling really stressed, myself rather disturbed, and both partially deafened…yet at the same time I couldn’t help but see God doing cool stuff.

We must have shaken about five hands on our way to our seats, but I’m afraid to say the welcome ended there – barely anyone around us talked to us and all the regulars were up the front. Can’t blame the church for that though, I’m sure I’ve cold-shouldered a few people at Reach over the years. The service started with a rather cool video and about 30 minutes of very high-energy sung worship incorporating equally high-energy prayers into a very professional outfit – with plenty of space down the front for a mass of jumping bodies. A very long church notices followed, and the rather cool !A-TV – a five minute video with the latest news. There’s certainly plenty going on at that church – the booklet about it was several pages long and includes loads of interest groups, hang-out-in-coffee-shops groups, small groups, training, prayer sessions, youth stuff, a church plant the other side of Europe and all kinds of cool things.

The sermon was, well, an experience. This guy shouted at us with great passion and zeal for about 45 minutes about how we are made in the image of God and we should start acting like God’s respresentation here on earth. Great content, good exegesis, and even I only found a few minor things to pick him up on theologically, and they were certainly open to interpretation. He just shouted. Continually. We closed with a song and quickly made our exit….the traffic noise of central Manchester suddenly was as silence to our ears!

It was very, very slick – too much so IMO. It was far too programmed for my liking – certainly we should give God the best we can but I’m not convinced that slick programming is his idea of the best. The people there obviously love God and the church obviously sustains them so it’s doing great work – and it’s odd, I love loud gigs but maybe I’m just getting old and found this morning’s experience too much loud and too much going on to feel I could ever be at home. Plus, above anything else, it just didn’t feel right. Not like ‘Satan is in control’ not right but ‘This isn’t where I’m meant to be’ right. That settled it – I guess reach will always be a kind of home to me. Doesn’t help Cat though – her search continues!

(Techie note – if you ever feel the need to put every single aspect of your work through a compressor, resist. They’re great for a lot of things but having spent two hours listening to finely compressed loudness I found myself crying out for some dynamics! And yes, that’s why the title’s in CAPITALS – it really was church out loud!)

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