In your younger years did you ever notice when old people got even older they became grumpy and self-centered? Maybe this wasn’t your experience. And I knew some people who, like an orange, became sweeter with age. But there were too many who took the path of the lemon.
This became most apparent in church. I’ve known too many saints who aged and became sour and dour. It broke my heart to see these lemon-embracers stir up trouble in the church; often doing battle with younger people.
It’s time for Baby Boomers to make the decision to take the path of the orange and become sweeter. I dream of the powerful possibilities for God if the Boomers joined hands with the younger generations. This one shift might be strong enough to turn the decline of the church around.
How is this possible? It can only happen if the Baby Boomers work on becoming rock stars in their churches. Are you ready to explore that possibilities.
Here’s how any Baby Boomer can become a rock star at church.
1. Become your Pastor’s biggest supporter.
If you’ve never been a pastor you cannot fully understand the load being carried. It is tough. The load alone can crush the spirit. Your pastor doesn’t need you stirring the pot. This is not a call for everyone to be empty-eyed zombies chanting “yes master!” But you ought to work on becoming the biggest supporter in the church of your pastor.
2. Exemplify and model love for all to see.
Work hard on loving others. Love those younger people in the church. Let them see the power of genuine love in you. Model for others what it means to love those outside the church. Be especially careful on Facebook knowing unchurched people are watching you closely. If you are going to make a mistake in relationships, make it on the side of love.
3. Rise above the music question.
I get it. For the first 40 years of my life I sang hymns. We regarded them as being almost as divinely inspired as the Bible. There are times when we sing a hymn in church and it brings back a special memory of the past. But please. Let’s decide to rise above the music question.
As a church we have MUCH bigger issues to face then to spend time counting how many times a phrase is repeated in a worship chorus. It’s time to start worrying more about the lost people around us than the music we sing in church.
4. Lead the way in becoming non-judgmental.
This is tricky. We are so good at judging others. It comes natural. But it is so wrong. God is the Judge. Not you or me. This position recognizes you are not God and being judgmental is doing serious damage.
I’ve made a new friend on Facebook. He has been deeply wounded by Christians. He has a lot of anger. Not long ago he entered into a conversation on my Facebook page and some Christians tore into him. They only proved his low opinion of Christians. We must stop being so judgmental.
5. Find a job to do in the church and keep on doing it.
As we enter those Promised Land of Retirement too many Boomers are retiring from their ministry in the church. You’ve taught children’s Sunday School for 30 years and you want out. It’s what retirement people do: they bail. Just a minute! Don’t give up all your ministries in the church.
Every day 10,000 Baby Boomers retire. What if each of them resigned all of their ministries at church? Now, after all these years, you have experience and finely honed skills. Please don’t decide to sit on the sideline.
6. Embrace your changing role in the church.
Boomers have been in charge at church for a long time. We’ve called the shots. We’ve led the church. But slowly our role is changing. The next generation is coming up with good ideas. They love God passionately and want to lead. Let them.
Our role as Boomers in the church is changing into that of equipper, cheerleader, and coach. We must train the next generation to lead and then we must step back and let them. This is a gradual process but it is important we embrace our new role.
7. Use your positive influence to transition sour Boomers into sweet Boomers.
Become the person who influences your friends in a positive way. Refuse to get into the gutter of negativity. Be positive. Encourage the discouraged. Teach them how they too can be a Boomer rock star at church.
Too often we allow one sour person to poison the entire bunch. Don’t let that happen. Decide you are going to be the positive person who accepts the mission of making others sweet. It’s a big task but with God’s help you can do it.
Dream with me. Imagine what would happen in your church if the Baby Boomers all became rock stars. The church would be transformed. I can’t sing or play a musical instrument but I would want to be part of a rocking church like that!
Do you know any Baby Boomer rock stars?
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Wise words from a man who should know :)
Ha! Thanks for the comment. Rock on!
Amen! It’s not about us. It’s inviting people to choose to accept Christ. We aren’t living in the 50’s.
Agree with all except # 3. The music question is important. Songs need to be about the Father, Son, and/or Holy Spirit, mentioning them by name–not calling Him “you”, otherwise many songs can be about any person. Many songs are too high or too low to be sung by the average vocalist. When that happens, people don’t join in worship and it becomes a worship team performance. Gerry (aka Jock) agrees with me on this.
Well, if Jock says so! In my view, although not stated in the post, we focus too much on the words “contemporary” and “traditional.” I would rather focus on the theology of the song than on what category we put it in. Thanks for your input!