magnetic.

magnet1Seth Godin recently had a provocative post on the current state of marketing.  the basic gist of it was that marketers have abused their power so much that now, to properly spread a message, you have to go above and beyond and “overwhelm the market with long-term, generous marketing that we (the customer) have no choice but to start paying attention again.”

as i read the post, i couldn’t help but think about the church today.  many people are disenchanted by the church and have left, or are seriously reconsidering their place in the Christian landscape.  and i can’t say i blame them.  we’ve presented a largely dogmatic, boring and irrelevant faith.  that’s not to say that we don’t have something seriously enchanting to offer, but just that we’ve exchanged something of the grandeur of God for a rote set rules.

but rather than sit and bash our failures, i’m more interested in figuring out how we can reclaim the incredible draw of Christ.  one of my favorite words to describe Christ came from my friend, Tre Sheppard, when he observed that Jesus was “magnetic”.  people were always itching to be with him, to hear him, to touch him, to see him, to question him.  so how can we become magnetic little Christ’s?

i wonder in what sense we need to elevate the conversation, to overwhelm the marketplace of ideas with a generous faith that is so electric, bold, engaging and authentic it can’t help but be noticed.

i don’t have any bold conclusions as to the specifics of what that looks like at the moment…just something i’m pondering.

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5 Responses to magnetic.

  1. mattwiggins says:

    Two funny things here. First, last August my youth group moved into a youth room with two walls painted with magnetic paint so we’ve had a lot of fun sticking stuff to them. From that I came up with a new theme for the year called, quite creatively, “Be Magnetic” and looked at how Christians can stick together, attract, elevate, supercharge, and point (essentially the 5 purposes of the church: fellowship, evangelism, worship, discipleship, and ministry) to explain it all to the kids. And that’s the closest I’ve come to a marketing campaign.

    The second funny thing is that is the same exact magnet I used in one of my pictures. Ha!

  2. joeldaniel says:

    @matt…funny about the picture. cool ideas for the stuff you’re doing with your group. this whole idea is definitely one of the things i hope we have some time to discuss at seismos.

  3. mattwiggins says:

    What is this, Twitter? @matt indeed.

    Seismos: I got spousal blessing. Need pastoral blessing. Will achieve today.

  4. timbeck05 says:

    i think what i like most about humanities response to Jesus’ magnetism was that they felt free to question him.

    i think, by and large, today’s church-goer isn’t really interested in questions from non-church-goers. well, to be more specific, they (or should i say ‘we’) are not interested in listening to the questions… we are more concerned with preparing our answer.

    i think that is a challenge for us all: to be better listeners to the questions. i have a close friend who has been disinterested in church involvement for a number of years, but now is seeking.

    you know what he wants? discussion. honest discussion. about real life. real things. real faith. with real opinions from real people. with graceful disagreements. where individuals aim to understand and learn for each other.

    i know this because he asked me where he could find a church like that in the area.

    and then i was forced to be honest with him and tell him that i had the same desire and that very few churches are truly willing to have such discussions.

    but i have faith that a church can exist, where agendas, prejudices, and manufactured answers take a back seat.

  5. joeldaniel says:

    thanks, tim, for that incredible response. i sorta want to frame those words somewhere & think about them for awhile.

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