I read this article in the paper about local "emergent" churches and it was pretty cool! It's a young people's movement in Christianity, where people are leaving the buildings and traditions behind and experiencing a God that fits their generation. I think that a lot of what they said totally fits the way I feel as a young person and as a Christian.
One of the things one group was doing was meeting and planting trees all day and then going to lunch. That was church. They are trying to be the church instead of going to church. Pretty cool.
My one reservation was this: they still had a church service but tailored it to fit their personal style. (not all of the groups, just some) and it became more about being attractive to young people...
Why not ditch all the traditions? Why not start with the Bible and Jesus and see what He calls you to do?
I have this idea in my head and heart that Christianity isn't supposed to be visible as an organization. It should be as natural and fluent as the Spirit of God. Living in his will alone will set us apart. I want to let Him set me apart, not a set of guidelines set up by people so that others will recognize us as Christians.
Watchman Nee had a great example of this: A rice farmer had to pump water up hill to his field every day. One morning he went to his field to discover that someone had broken the barrier between his field and his neighbor's field below to steal his water so that they wouldn't have to pump their own water. His answer to this was not justice, but the "extra mile". The next morning he pumped water into his neighbors field as well as his own. The neighbor was shocked by this and aproached him about it. When he answered that he was a Christian and it was what God wanted him to do, he eventually became a believer as well.
I want to apply my faith and live it out and what ever "traditional things" about church God wants me to do can come later. I want to start with my relationship with Him and see what happens. Who will he bring to me? What will he teach me? Where will I go?