Monday, May 22, 2006

“Keys To Church Growth.” Vol. 1

"It’s Got To Be Real"

“These people honor Me with their lips, but their heart is far from Me” –Jesus in Mark 7:6.

Does anyone still like the church? I believe most people don’t enjoy church or if they do enjoy it they get very little out of it. Church is no longer what it was meant to be. Church has become a place where people come on Sundays wearing their masks of righteousness then leave and live however they want the rest of the week. Many churches have boring Sunday School classes, outdated music, passionless preaching, pews that aren’t comfortable, people that aren’t friendly, and scripture readings from a version of the Bible that is nearly 400 years old. I’m not surprised that people aren’t drawn to the church anymore. I’m just surprised that more Christians haven’t realized it yet.

So should these churches just shut their doors since they aren’t reaching anyone? Not yet. I want to project a plan that I believe will instill new life into a church. I believe that a church must get back to what it was meant to be. The church is a group of called out believers meeting together for worship, fellowship, evangelism, ministry, and mission.

What that said, I believe the first place for a church to start is to become authentic. The church is a place of connection. People are to connect with God and with each other. Matters of fact, lost people are drawn to authentic relationships. I believe one of the main reasons people don’t come to church is because they don’t see any authenticity. People wear their mask on Sundays and then show their true colors the rest of the week. When people wear masks they put up a wall that keeps people from getting close to them. In most churches there is no relationship building because there is no authenticity. Until we become real we can’t bond or grow.

The reason inviting someone to your house to study the Bible is more successful than inviting someone to church is because in your home they get to see the real you and they will bond with you more quickly. The goal of any church is to bond. People aren’t going to be drawn to a church that has no bond of fellowship because there is no authenticity.

Listen to James 5:16, “Therefore, confess your sins to one another and pray for one another, so that you may be healed.” This is one of the scarcest verses in the Bible. How many of you are ready to confess your sins to people in your church? If you wouldn’t be willing to confess to people in your church you must ask, why? I believe the reason is there isn’t an authentic bond in our churches. If we can’t be real in church and we have Christ, why would someone who doesn’t have Christ want to come to our church? If we are going to grow we have to be real.


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