A confession: last weekend I was in Boulder watching my son graduate from law school. My wife and I stayed at a hotel in Louisville. Our hotel was part of a hotel row–a number of hotels, and they looked quite similar.
I drove out of our hotel looking for a bite to eat, tired from the day of travel. When I returned, I parked and walked towards the hotel. I tried to get in an outside door using my room key, but the key didn’t work. So I went inside, turned the corner towards the elevator, but the elevator wasn’t where I remembered it should have been. Finally I found the elevator, stepped in, tried to push the button for the third floor but their was no 3 button.
Then it dawned on me—our hotel had a fireplace in the lobby, this one didn’t. I was in the wrong hotel. I left as quickly as I could, looked up the street, and saw my three story hotel. Got in the rental car and drove to the right place.
Disoriented. It’s not just me in the wrong hotel. It is all of us, especially those who have been around church for a while. Everything looks similar to the way it used to be, but the locks have been changed, floors have been added or removed, and someone took out the fireplace.
The world is changing and rapidly. So the church must be different. The essential DNA remains: people of God, body of Christ, temple of the Spirit. Still it is not easy–It is hard, troubling, disorienting.
We need to move into the new ecclesial world with determination, but also with grace and patience. We are disoriented, but we are disoriented together.