Highway Hypnosis and Church

October 25th, 2013
Wikimedia | Thisisbossi/Vanity

Recently, a friend was explaining highway hypnosis to me. Basically, it's all those times I have driven to a destination only to arrive not remembering how I got there. Then it hit me, I do the same thing at church a lot.

So here's what I resolved to do:

  • I'll read the Lord's Prayer (or other liturgy) off the screen or listen to those around me when I find myself reciting by rote.
  • I'll sing the praise song or hymn with feeling, even though I am an awful singer. Even if I don't like the theology or have forgotten what an ebenezer is (a stone of help). 
  • I'll intentionally park and sit somewhere new. Then I'll talk to somebody I don't know. Easy I thought as I wrote that, I'm an extrovert. So maybe I'll still talk to somebody new but I'll plan to listen more than I talk.
  • I'll take notes during the sermon. Easy again, we usually have a place for taking notes. But I'll intentionally listen for what God is saying to me through the sermon.
  • I'll stay away from the donuts, not easy.

Then it occurred to me, sometimes as a church leader I suffer from highway hypnosis like:

  • Spending time with just my Christian friends. Not really venturing out past the Christian cocoon I've made for myself.
  • Asking the same people to help with the new project I'm working on.
  • Teaching a class or leading a small group the same way I've always done it because it's easier that way.

I could write more, you could add to the list, we've heard it all before. Yawn.

It's simple. I need to change it up by being present and stop doing church like I drive.

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