Happy clappy

I recently found myself in conversation with someone bemoaning their experience of going to a church that was a bit ‘happy clappy’. They were not a regular churchgoer but had gone for the baptism of their second child. Their first child had been baptised in a more traditional church and this had clearly been more in keeping with their expectation of what church should be like.

I find this attitude somewhat bizarre. Jesus said that he had come to bring life and life in all its fullness. He clearly spent considerable time at weddings, dinner parties and generally hanging out and having fun with his friends. He told them that he was ‘the way, the truth and the life’. I’m quite sure that those who spent time with him found a happiness and contentment they didn’t find elsewhere, and I’m equally sure they laughed a lot and celebrated all that was good about life. So, if the church is the place where we go to meet with Jesus how appropriate that it should be, at times, happy and clappy. A family that never rejoiced and laughed together would be a very dull affair indeed.

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