People are walking away from organized religion in droves. Why is it that young people have little interest in religion, and an increasing number of middle aged adults are losing their religion? I have a friend who's a pastor in Ashland, Oregon who hosts what he calls, Theology Pub. They talk about stuff that really matters to them. Last week the subject was anxiety. An attender, who says he has no religion, told my friend that he'd never walk into a church to talk about things that matter. But a pub? "Why not?"
Too often what passes for religion is tight, cold, serious. And religious organizations appear to many people to be concerned about who's in and who's out; they're hostile, narrow, suspicious of, or even hostile to, change, and are preoccupied with keeping their institutions afloat.
To outsiders, we religious people (as a whole) seem to be fearful, uptight, joyless, anything but playful. We're viewed as terribly irrelevant people who have our heads mostly in the sand.
Jesus wasn't any of these things. He was condemned by the religious of his day as a glutton and a drunk (Matthew 11.19).
Intention: Do something today to change the perception of the nonreligious.