u2 & me2

8432_152144007384_687067384_3088781_6774436_slast saturday i attended the u2 concert. it was amazing and beautiful and fun, and most of the time it felt absolutely surreal. like i wasn’t actually there. like i was in a dream, or heaven, or experiencing christmas morning over and over again.

the concert was at soldier field in front of 6o,000 people and we sat behind the stage, so for most of the show we saw u2’s backs. and yet, it was one of the most intimate shows i’ve ever experienced. i felt connected and a part of the show, like i was truly experiencing a show with several thousand of my closest friends. how did they do this?

there were several things i observed that contributed to this:

8432_152145402384_687067384_3088791_7559479_s1. the stage was in the round and the band was very aware of the audience. each member consistently moved around the stage and several times even performed for those of us sitting in the back. it was almost difficult to know which way was the “front” of the stage.

2. the band sang songs i knew and in a way that encouraged me to sing along.

8432_152144637384_687067384_3088787_5657523_s

3.  the live video was amazing and perfect. i was compelled to watch the screens because it was always a live representation of what was really happening on the stage.

4. the lighting, video, smoke, disco ball, and stage set all contributed to a show far bigger than i had ever seen. it felt big, and magical and special. but because i felt connected to the experience and the band, the bigness of the show added to my overall experience instead of detracting from it.

so.. all of this has me thinking about the way we do church on sunday mornings.

what if we really approached our sunday morning services both for kids and adults as a way to create both bigness and connectedness?

what if our goal was to help people feel like they were a part of the service and not just spectators watching a big show?

if every week at church felt like saturday’s u2 concert.. i would never miss a sunday.

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2 responses to this post.

  1. Is church about weekly attendance, though, or more about how your life is affected the other hours of your week?

    I get what you are saying. I’m not trying to be argumentative or contrary, but I think there has to be something more than just making people feel as if they are part of the service. I think even going to a U2 concert/experience every week would get old. Even more importantly, there needs to be a transformational community that lives beyond itself and lives for being a part of God’s larger story of redemption of all of creation that spans into eternity.

    I know this isn’t “new” information. I just think that we are so easily caught up in creating “Wow” that we let that overshadow an experience where the Holy Spirit invades the lives of people and changes them in such a way that they realize their brokenness and everyone else’s brokenness and become a community that reaches out in love and allows the Kingdom of God to intersect with this broken world.

    Reply

  2. Posted by amyedolan on September 17, 2009 at 8:34 pm

    henry –

    great comments! i completely agree that church is more than just the worship service on sunday. our faith experience is the sum total of our lives. but i do think that the sunday worship service is one piece of our total faith experience – and i’m anxious for the day when the worship service includes more moments of “wow” and experiential activity, and when the church community is able to lead and shape that time instead of just the pastors and church staff. i believe that when the community shapes the church – faith becomes real and alive, thus able to change the world.

    Reply

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