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by Dalton Key
for the week of March 18, 2018 
          Newsflash for the church of the 21st century:  massive, cathedral-like church buildings coupled with the latest, cutting-edge accouterments do not in any way guarantee that pure and meaningful worship is actually taking place.
          There seems to be no limit to what churches today are willing to spend on steeples, signs and billboard-sized song-screens; on computer-controlled video systems, sound systems, and even elaborate, computerized systems for perfectly maintaining the temperature and humidity of the air we breathe.
          Today’s worshipper is encouraged to come in and bask in the luxury of comfortable, convenient, near-effortless worship.
          And yet I can’t help but wonder if those ancient Christians of Rome, huddled together in their stench-filled catacombs, might easily outstrip today’s more modern members with respect to simple sincerity and depth of worship.
          Worshipers have come a long way since those bygone days; but sadly, and with a full head of steam, in the wrong direction.  While many of us own the inside track on atmosphere, we have morphed from comfort to complacency; so much so that many of us are barely able to stay awake for a one-hour worship service.
          The hearty “amen” of yesteryear is fast being replaced with yawning, nodding, and yes, in many cases, outright snoring.
          Christ likened the Pharisees to “white-washed tombs which outwardly appear attractive, but inside are full of all kinds of uncleanness.”  (Matthew 23:27, McCord.)
          What would He say about us?