Before You Get Your Church Panties in a Bunch … {A Guest Post}

Today’s guest post is from another faith bloggin’ Jessica – J.K. McGuire from Jezamama.


I hate plastic trees on church platforms. I remember standing on the stage trying to figure out the best way to put those things back in their original spot and good grief… there is no way they look good. I don’t care how many Christmas lights you string through the things. They look cheap and fake. But someone on the decorating committee thought they’d look good up here. Like a fake plastic tree that collects dust and twinkles on Sunday morning will somehow enhance our worship together.


Give me a cathedral ceiling of real trees on any given day and I’ll show you what it is to worship God for real.

But you can’t say things like that because someone on some church decorating committee somewhere is going to get her panties in a bunch and label me: “church basher.” Because she thinks they look good, after all they approved the fake trees in committee. If the committee decides then it must look good, and you shouldn’t question the committee because that is “causing division.”

OK so here is where it gets messy because I’ve been on church committees and in prayer rooms – and sometimes what we decide to do in those rooms off the sanctuary, they are NOT good. We have ourselves convinced they are in the name of intercession or discernment or love or reproof. We claim where two or three are gathered He is there (Matthew 18:20)… but wow do we forget the “gathered in His name part”.

So I’m asking – are you gathering in the name of Jesus or the name of church or self? Are you gathering to maintain the status quo or change the world by proclaiming the saving work of Jesus (remember that whole Go and make disciples thing)? Do you go to maintain tradition because this is what every good Christian boy and girl does… or are you going to be together in the name of Jesus to worship the Father and grow in maturity? Are we spurring each other on toward love and good works (Hebrews 10:24) or are we just standing around in committees picking our panty-wedgies?

Are you going to church for the fake plastic trees and the twinkling lights… or are you going there to be together beneath the banner of “Redeemed. Treasured. Beloved. Rescued. And Saved”?

Because I’ve watched Church folk push other church folk off platforms and out church doors over those twinkling fake trees. I’ve watched Christ follower claim Jesus with one breath and curse their brother in Christ with the next (James 3:9-10). I’ve watched church prayer teams “intercede” so that people were left out and leaders were pushed out and fakers were asked to take their place.

I know that it can be overwhelming. I know the pain can be too much.  I know the bitterness can seep in leaving you feeling desperate.  I know what it is to want to throw In the towel. I know what it is to take some time away, but I also know that the church can be more. I know that when we embrace what Christ died for us to be, what God has created us to be, and what the Holy Spirit empowers us to be… I know when we hold to being more the fake trees don’t matter.

When church is all about us – we worry about fake trees, Christmas lights, piano lids, paint colors and being right. But when church is all about Him we are powerful, world changers on fire – servant leaders, leap of faith takers, aware of our nothingness without Him and more. When it is all about Jesus Christ we are more likely to push fake trees off platforms – and not people.

 When our church is all about Jesus we are more willing to get rid of the dust collectors, while allowing the Holy Spirit to breath life into these dried up bones.


-Jessica McGuire is a wife to Mr. Hubby and homeschooling mother of four littles 8 and under. She resides in the Washington, D.C. Metro area. You can find her writing about messy faith and more on her blog, Jezamama.


  1. Totally relate to this. I just left my church of 20+ years, and feel as if I was pushed out the door. I’d been the Children’s Director for the past 10 years and recently those lovely committees started forming to “protect me and protect the church” – What it did to me was shrink my ‘growing pot’ so small that I was struggling to grow and was actually shrinking in faith. After leaving, it’s like a breath of fresh air. I wish them nothing but the best, but the best for me was a fresh start and a replant. Thanks for sharing this today, it reaffirmed to me that I made the right decision. :)

  2. As always, Jessica, you hit it spot on! Thank you for being raw and honest, and for loving God…really, truly, loving God.


  1. […] have this thing about plastic trees on church platforms. It’s one of my top aesthetic platform pet peeves. As much as I dislike those plastic trees I […]