Moving from Culturally Relevant to Shaping Culture

I hear enough discussion about churches who want to be ‘culturally relevant’. As a church, we want to go past this to being an active participate in the shaping of the culture around us. I just had a great discussion with my friend Eric Brown (Pastor @ Imago Dei in Portland) and I’m going to think about this for a bit.

What are ways churches can shape the culture around them rather than just being culturally relevant?

3 Comments
  • bill streger

    December 12, 2005, 9:16 pm

    wow, that is a great question to think through. and it convicts the snot out of me too. so often the church is playing catch-up to the culture, trying to figure out how to be “relevant” to the world around us. we’re often reactive, rather than proactive. what would it be like if we set the pace and the tone for the culture – through our art, our music, our leadership, our writing… wow.

    thanks drew, now i’m not going to sleep tonight. way to go. 😉

  • Bryan Zug

    December 13, 2005, 9:09 pm

    Great question — it really is the only thing that is going to break the church out of the “cool kid catchup” spiral that we continue to be in.

    We’ve got to get to a place where we are what Seth Godin calls “remarkable” leaders — doing things that lead instead of fanboy follow.

    I was recently able to try a bit of this at Seattle Mind Camp 1.0 with a session asking the question “Neo vs Samwise in a fight and what does this have to do with the attention economy”.

    It turned out better than expected, had a great draw, and ended up being a much discussed element of this very interesting geek slumber party. (See comment at the 8:10 mark in this mini documentary)

    Quite a bit of fun and it introduced me to a gillion interesting people who I would never meet while trying to play the “relevant” game.

  • ebrown

    June 16, 2007, 1:01 pm

    Did you go to the Q Conference in Atlanta? The conference was specifically for this “Q”uestion. I believe it will be coming to Los Angeles next year. See Fermi Project for more.

    -ebrown