50 reasons why church online is awesome

With everything that is going on in the world today and the increasing difficulty of going to church, here is why the internet is saving the day!

  1. Avoid having to walk next to your church’s corny signboard message on the street
  2. Avoid being quizzed about your plans for marriage and children when you bring a new partner to church
  3. Avoid sermon topics that are challenging, call for repentance or encourage you to give
  4. Avoid the dilemma of choosing where or where not to sit
  5. Avoid the embarrassment of being caught reading the lyrics for a well-known song
  6. Avoid the judgement about giving or not giving to the church
  7. Be part of a megachurch in your home as your new personal satellite campus
  8. Choose your own denomination like choose your own adventure
  9. Choose your own praise experience with your personal Spotify playlist
  10. Choose your worship leader and preacher tailored to a conviction level for your comfort levels
  11. Don’t worry about being the only one to raise your hands
  12. Don’t worry about the guy that still isn’t converted after all these years sitting next to you
  13. Don’t worry about crying children or youth ministry, as it is all about me
  14. Don’t worry about an unpaid sound guy struggling to get the mics working when you have the comfort of surround sound at home
  15. Don’t worry about your Pastor not being woke enough, knowing the sermon’s streamed on social media, they will definitely be politically correct to make sure the stream does not face unexpected technical difficulties
  16. Feel like you’re being Bible bashed? Just spam the angry react emoji until the preacher moves on
  17. Forget about the no eating in church rule, feel free to have brunch, lunch, or afternoon tea during church
  18. Hack Bible study by having a video background of yourself listening attentively and scratching your head playing on loop
  19. Listen to the sermon at the gym to get a spiritual workout
  20. My homebrew beats church coffee hands down
  21. Never be called upon by the preacher to come on stage as part of a live sermon illustration or be forced to share a testimony with the congregation
  22. Never be stuck behind a chatty group blocking the doors of the chapel
  23. Never get caught ogling the hot worship leader
  24. Never risk the embarrassment of singing off-key
  25. Never worry about the church Wi-Fi not working or being caught browsing something other than YouVersion during the service
  26. No angry stares or trying to hide that your phone isn’t on silent
  27. No gelling your hair or putting on makeup while driving to church
  28. No judgement for falling asleep in church, you haven’t missed it as long as you can re-watch the live stream later
  29. No more struggling to decide how quickly to leave after the final benediction or weighing up whether it is worth the effort to have a conversation with someone during morning tea after the service
  30. No more struggling to find a pen and paper to take notes, just copy and a section of the live captioning and paste it onto your Twitter feed with #blessed #livingmybestlife
  31. No more worrying about a Sunday best outfit, just put on a Snapchat filter if you really have to turn on your webcam
  32. No need to be gracious to families with prams or persons with disabilities for spots in the church carpark
  33. No need to get out of bed (and no one to criticise you for being low order)
  34. No need to hurriedly photograph the PowerPoint slide of a good sermon point before it changes, just pause the video to take a screenshot for Facebook and tag the preacher to show that you’ve got Godly connections
  35. No need to introduce yourself or talk to the newcomer
  36. No need to look for a new Homebase for your Christian life when you are already at home
  37. No risk of getting chewed gum on your hand when you accidentally touch the underside of the pew
  38. No shame on being drunk on spirits, not just for Communion…
  39. No stress about being late to church and suddenly realising that it’s a female guest preacher when you first get to scroll through the live comments of “excited for Pastor Joel Osteen’s blessing on us today”
  40. Do non-Christian friends want to hang out instead of church? Not a problem, just click on Add to Watchlist on YouTube
  41. Preachers can have better feedback from how many likes they get
  42. Promote your favourite political ideology with a custom Zoom background and profile picture during Bible study
  43. Remove the awkwardness of bringing a new partner to church when you two are already ready after last night’s Netflix and chill
  44. Show off your house or greenscreen skills if you really have to turn on your video during Bible study
  45. Skip having to shake hands, hug or saying hello and save time on not having to volunteer for ministry
  46. Skip the boring parts of the church service such as the opening prayer, Bible reading, and jump straight to the sermon’s application and the benediction
  47. Skip the mission team’s sharing and testimonial because you can just  double-tap on their Instagram photos later
  48. Watch and be part of as many churches as you like but never have to commit to any
  49. Watch Netflix and church at the same time, thank God for dual apps on the screen
  50. Zoom into Bible study and skip the difficult questions from the Bible study leader by mouthing your mic isn’t working

This list is mostly satirical if you haven’t figured that out already. But in all seriousness, despite the situation that we are facing, the importance of fellowshipping with one another centred on Christ cannot be understated. Hebrews chapter 3 verse 13 reminds us to “… encourage one another daily, as long as it is called “Today,” so that none of you may be hardened by sin’s deceitfulness”.

This article was first published in Christian Today Australia on 24 September 2020.