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God in the Margins: Introverted Worship, a Jamie Kocur Guest Post

Today’s guest post comes from new friend of the blog, Jamie Kocur. It deals with her feelings as an introvert worshipping/leading worship in an extroverted church culture.

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For some time, I have felt that I was expected to worship a certain way. This way involves hand raising, loud singing, big arm movements and gesticulating, and often a general look of pain on your face. This should take place preferably on the first couple rows at church.

If I’m not worshipping in this way, I feel guilty, like I’m not doing it right. Modern, contemporary church services seem to have clearly communicated that this is the way to worship. Worship leaders stand at the front, loudly shouting instructions and demonstrating their own expression of discomfort. To properly love Jesus requires energy, shouting, and large speakers.

I am tired of feeling guilty.

Continue Reading…

An Introvert in the Great American Megachurch

Recently at church I heard a lesson about the importance of building
margins into our lives. The irony of it was that this teaching came
from the pulpit of a megachurch. And generally speaking, it has been
my experience that most megachurches implicitly gravitate towards an
extroverted structure. Thus, for the introvert, there is very little
room for “margins.” (Or at least margins that an introvert would recognize).

Yet that is exactly where I feel I’m at when I’m attending service, or
trying to get involved: in the margins. Donald Miller
wrote–in Blue Like Jazz–”At the time I was attending this
large church in the suburbs. It was like going to church at the Gap. I
don’t know why I went there. I didn’t fit. I had a few friends,
though, very nice people.” I understand this. My family and I live
this. The only connection we have to our large church is a few
friends–friends we made via some activities our kids were once involved
in. Now it’s really our kids that keep us going back. If they didn’t
like it so much, I’m not sure we would.

Continue Reading…

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