Hacky Sack and Demographics

Yesterday I went to a park to eat my lunch. It was about 2 o'clock on a Wednesday. I expected to see a few mothers with their kids taking an afternoon in the park. Instead I noticed that the parking lot was quite full. The disc golf course was crawling with people (mostly younger males). Three guys walked up and started playing hacky sack. You know, the game where you kick around a bean bag.

When I finished eating I joined their circle and demonstrated that I still had what it takes to be awesome at an inconsequential sport (that's my specialty). As we played I found out these guys worked as cooks at a local restaurant. They are young, probably early 20's, and have dreams of building good lives for themselves. I asked them if they'd rather make more money or work with people they like. They both said that making more money wouldn't help them if they hated their job. I told them I was a pastor, which didn't seem to impress them so much as confuse them. Soon we all had to leave.

As I drove back to the building where our church meets, I thought about these guys and the hundreds more in our community just like them. How are they supposed to hear about Jesus? Not just hear about him, but to see him as something that is important to their lives. I thought further about our church. Who is coming to our church?

We have children--none of them the same age. We have youth--none of them from similar backgrounds or interests. We have single young-adults--none of them in the same situation of life. I'm sensing a pattern. Our adults range from young couples with no kids all the way up to fully retired seniors. Its mathematically mind boggling the mix of people we have in our small church. Blue-collar, white-collar; teachers, medical professionals, bankers, engineers, telemarketers, homemakers, construction workers... what other organization would bring together such a diverse group of people? Its weird. I think to myself, "Who are we missing?" Every type of person in our community I can think of, we have a representative. I'm sure there are plenty of sub-cultures we are missing out on, and we haven't made a large impact on any of them. Still, what is God doing here?

I don't know where all these thoughts are going. I just thought it was very interesting, the mix of "people groups" God has brought together under the banner of NorthStar. How will that impact the future of our church?

Does your church represent the people in your area? Whose missing?


  1. Yes, someone is reading. I understand what you are saying. How do we get such a mixed bag of nuts and not have more looking alike. I think you have a great starting point. You have people who are able to relate to anyone (almost) who walks in the door. Maybe that is what all your thinking is about. How do we use this variety pack to grow God's kingdom?---Aaron Hall


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