This is a little series of posts I put out in 2010, at the time they were helpful for a number of people, I hope that continues to be true today.
Over the course of this conversation I have heard from many people who were in the Church and then through a number of things (unresolved questions, irrational logic, inability to reconcile ideas, frustration with "church folk" or religion, etc.) which have become too much for many people and they have left the Church. Many people are labeling this group the "deChurched" (which by the way we all know labels have a number of limitations which are not going to be considered at this time but they are noted in the back of my mind).
The "deChurched" group is really the group which I feel called to focus much energy toward. Not to "reclaim" them as "lost souls", but to seek a relationship with this group of people and learn what it is about the Christian faith they have rejected. As I listen to some of the "deChurched" I hear three things that seem to keep coming up that seem to be the stickiest of the sticky points.
1) God image (who or what is God like).
2) Issues of theodicy (why there is evil in the world).
3) Pluralism issues (is any religion the only way to a relationship with God).
I know there are many issues and there are many others who have taken these issues on in more in depth ways I wanted to focus the conversation here on this blog to these three issues which keep coming up in many of the conversations I have with people from the "Unchurched" to the "Churched" to the "deChurched".
SIDE NOTE - If you are interested, Brian Mclaren's book "A New Kind of Christianity" takes on 10 questions where I have only selected 3. It was a wonderful read and one which forces the Christian reader to de-construct our faith in order to find our roots. I recommend it for all Christians and any non-Christians who may be interested in learning more about a Christian faith which may take more seriously the questions than other expressions of Christian faith.
So, without getting to far into it, the next three posts are going to look at these above topics in a very surface way in order to engage a conversation with any community of readers that stumble upon this blog.