The Church is supposed to be the house of God where people comes each week to fellowship with each other, to hear a word from the Lord, to received strength and deliverance, and to worship God. However, many churches have adopted cultures that are not biblical or should be a part of the body of Christ, a body that should be separated from the world. A culture can be defined as a way of life, thinking or acting of a set of people in a geographical location. Each country has its own culture, and within that culture we can find many different cultures. For example, Rastafarians have their own cultures. Within these small cultures there can still be found other cultures as different cities, communities, a particular district or area, church, or even your own family or home may form its own culture or rules by which your family abides. Culture controls to a large extent the thoughts or behavior of its adherence and helps to form ones identity. You can simple tell something about someone by knowing where they live or where born simple because of culture.
- We are better a worshipper, singer or more talented than you. I have seen church people of the same belief being separated because each church is saying they are better at doing a particular thing than the other church. Each church competing for being the best. Because of this, we are seeing a continuation of this culture as children grow up with the same attitude of their parents not knowing where it is coming from or why the hedge is there in the first place. I have found myself in this situation where I started adopting this way of thinking without first stopping to question it, but continuing a culture that was not supposed to be there in the first place.
- A very rigid church culture. There are some churches that believe in continuing all the traditions of the old time days even if they are not working. They failed to understand that God may have been moving a particular way in what they were doing, but we are living in new era where what may have worked 20-50 years ago may not work in this generation. I am no way referring to the culture of God in the Bible, but I am referring to traditions of men. Similarly, things must be done a particular way and follow a particular fashion or program. It is these cultures that at times stiffen the people and stops the church from really experiencing a move of God.
- The church is consumed with social activities and not so much on the spirituality or the word of God. I do not have a problem with the body of Christ having different social activities for the community and its members, but there is a big issue when the church is known for its giving and social activities and not on its doctrine, spirituality and the move of God in the church. The church at Ephesus was working tirelessly and no doubt helping the people in the community, but they had lost their first love. When the church has lost its first love, the body of Christ will suffer. Giving, having different social activities, raising money for the poor, are all good, but what is the people learning? Are they becoming maturing in the faith? Are people more interested in different activities rather than on seeing a powerful move of God? There should be a balance in the body of Christ and we should be careful we do not lose sight of our real mission or purpose, and that is to win the lost at any cost.
- Selfishness. There are some churches that are characterized by selfishness by its members. Some of these churches are filled with people who think they must always get their own ways no matter how it may affect the church service, disrupt the move of God, or hurt other people. Similarly, there are members in these churches that forget one of the big lessons Jesus taught us- it is better to give than to received.
- The church is afraid of embracing change. Changes at times are good, especially when it will benefit the body of Christ and it is something the Lord wants to do. I have seen people that are stuck in what works yesterday that they are afraid of embracing a new move of God, or a new way of doing things that they will even fight against God. I have seen many times the Lord is moving in a particular direction and want to do something but because there are people who are not open to change or what the Lord is trying to do, that the service, and the church, suffers. Even the smallest of positive change is resisted. Unless God do something drastic or change the mindset of the leaders, these churches will never experience what God is trying to do at any given time.
These are some of the cultures in the church that we need to get rid of for the body of Christ to grow to a place of power and influence. The people are dying and the church is stuck in its own ways. The reach the lost we must be willing to change how we use to operate as long as it does not go against the word or will of God and change the doctrine of Christ. It is time for the church to move to a whole new level of thinking and spirituality.