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2020’s Impact on Habits and Worship

2020’s Impact on Habits and Worship

“It takes 40 days to build new habits.” We’ve heard that from experts for so long it has become internet truth. Actual studies show it can take from 18 to 254 days to shape habits. Whether you believe 18, 40 or 254 days, we need to recognize that the 2020 year of COVID-19 lock-downs forced churches to adapt new technology to reach people. Those people, in turn were building new online habits for worship and connection.

Businesses and churches had to adapt quickly to survive. Parking lot church, outdoor worship, and even huge crowds worshiping on California beaches. Businesses adopted curbside pickup for anything. Medical clinics built drive through testing and mobile shot locations.

Meanwhile people, including me, built new habits. I like picking up a hot gourmet meal at my favorite restaurant without waiting 45 minutes for a table and being packed in a noisy dining room. I like watching worship in my pajamas with my coffee. I like online reservation tools that sprang up for anything and everything. The technology that was embraced for survival became the new normal.

I’m writing this in the Spring of 2021 as the COVID-19 curve has dropped off, new infections have flattened out and states are beginning to re-open. Churches and many pastor friends are now trying to get people to show up in person again and the process is slow.

But how do we deal with a new ‘normal’? I doubt that churches will relax dress code and have ‘pajama day’ but they can keep embracing technology to connect people to God and each other. Restaurants can and should enjoy the additional carry out trade. The fact is our habits have changed, businesses and churches have new tools in their arsenal and the new normal will keep evolving.

As a lifelong geek, I tend to embrace technology and help others do the same. We can’t put the genie back in the bottle. The church is really the people, so I’ll see you in worship, maybe at the building and maybe online.


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