Four-Steps-Forward-for-the-Very-Sick-Church

In my previous post, I addressed the issue of very sick churches, noting that as many as 40 percent of the American congregations fall in that category. Several readers commented that they would like me to write about possible solutions to the problem.

I love to be a dispenser of hope. But I refuse to be a dispenser of false hope. The current reality is that most of the churches in this category will not reverse their trends. Again, the process may be long, but it seems so inevitable for many.

Will God Reverse the Decline?

Where is the hope in God? Do I not believe He can perform the miracles necessary to reverse the courses of these churches?

Of course I do. But in Scripture, God usually works with a willing people, at least a willing leader. When He delivered the Jews from the bondage of Egypt, he had a leader named Moses. That leader was initially reluctant, but eventually He obeyed and the people followed.

The rebuilding of Jerusalem was not easy after the exile, but God used Nehemiah to lead in the rebuilding of the wall around the city. He used Haggai to lead in the rebuilding of the temple.

Four Broad Categories of Action

Yes, reversal is possible, but God usually waits for a willing leader who will find willing people. Indeed, some of the readers in the last post shared such great stories of hope and leadership

What are, then, some responses church leaders and members can have in their church if it is very sick? I offer four broad categories. These are not quick-fix methodologies. To the contrary, they are not specific methods at all. They are really major shifts in attitude and a new posture of the heart.

  1. The church must admit and confess its dire need. Most churches move toward death because they refuse to acknowledge their condition. Sometimes a single leader will be used of God to move the church in this positive direction.
  2. The church must pray for wisdom and strength to do whatever is necessary. The change will not be easy. Many will resist it.
  3. The church must be willing to change radically. Frankly, this point is usually the point of greatest resistance. The church has to change decades of cumulative problem behaviors in a very short time.
  4. That change must lead to action and an outward focus. When a church begins to act positively with this radical change, it has essentially become a new church. It is not the church of old that refused to change and move forward.

The Possibilities with God

Can the reversal take place? It is highly unlikely. But it is not hopeless. Our hope is built upon the words of Jesus after he confronted the rich young man who wanted to enter the Kingdom of God:

“With men this is impossible, but with God all things are possible” (Matthew 19:26).

Let me hear from you. I always welcome your responses and insights.

Does Your Church Need to Go to the Next Level? Is Your Church Sick or Dying?

Enter your name and email address below to find out more about my new video series and receive a FREE eBook: 114 Things You Need to Know About Revitalizing Churches.

Comments

  1. Bruce Garner says

    I am aware of two United Methodist Congregations here in Atlanta who did “recover” and now thrive. Since I am not a member, I don’t know if they went through the first three steps you offer, but they did embrace the fourth. Based on that I think we can presume there was serious soul searching akin to the first three steps. Both had been ill and dying for years, just clinging to life. The churches were very old and the neighborhoods around them had changed dramatically over the years. One church was in an area where the all too often racial transition had taken place, yet they had not made any real overtures to the “new” neighborhood. They finally did decide to serve where they were and reached out to the community. The sign out front now regularly shows what is happening and much is community related. The other church is in a very urban area that had been mostly office buildings. A substantial number of those buildings have been converted to condominiums and lofts and new apartments and condos have been built. This congregation reached out to the LGBT folks living all around them. Their success was phenomenal. The services are now packed. The collections plates are filled. They even mounted a successful campaign to fund the restoration of their historic sanctuary and its unique stained glass windows. The key to both has been deciding to serve the community where they found themselves even as the community changed and continues to change.

    • Jim says

      Dying churches will return when the body decide to deny themselves and follow Christ, to present their bodies a living sacrifice and reach out past their four walls with the Gospel of Jesus Christ..

      If engaging the LGBT community means affirming them in their sin and denying the truth of scripture in regards to that lifestyle then it is better to let the church die. If it means sharing the Truth in love and they are still coming to the church that is great.

      • Bruce Garner says

        I’m sorry you feel that way, Jim. I guess decades of reading the Holy Scriptures with an open mind and heart rather than just listening to what someone else told me the “Bible said” leads me to a different interpretation than you. The Gospels, which give us the ministry of Jesus, all deal with Jesus exercising a ministry of inclusion rather than exclusion. He always embraced the marginalized, the poor, the outcast, those that the religious elite of His day turned away. He did not have kind words for the Pharisees who were so intent on the letter that they constantly missed the spirit behind the Law of Moses. Yes, Jim, I am a sinner….just like everyone. But Jesus has shown me the way of life and that way of life is one of being in right relationship with God and with my fellow pilgrims in this life. What Jesus condemned, and what Paul also condemned if you read him carefully, were relationships that were coercive, exploitive, or abusive. I have a very personal relationship with Jesus Christ. I have felt the presence of God through the Holy Spirit on several occasions in my life. And yes, I may be wrong, Jim, but so may you. My faith is not resting on any of that however. My faith rests on the infinite goodness, mercy and faithfulness I find in God. When called for an account of my life, I doubt it will include anything about sexual orientation at all. It will be an accounting of how well I loved my fellow human beings, whether or not I fed them when they were hungry, clothed them when naked, housed them when homeless, watered them when thirsty, and visited them when sick or imprisoned. Again, I’m sorry you feel this way. I doubt you know many if any LGBT people of faith. Considering what most have had to endure to simply find a place to worship the God they love, I assure you their faith in God is unshakable. Their faith in their fellow human beings…..not so much.

        • Jim says

          Bruce,

          I appreciate the response. We will not agree on our conclusions. I too have had many decades reading the Bible and have never had to rely on what “someone else told me.” God made it very clear in scripture, and I can site them if you wish, but I suspect you know that already, that homosexuality is a sexual sin, Romans chapter 1 is very clear. Adultry and fornication are also sins and just because our society has become accepting of these behaviors does not excuse the sin.

          While aspects of the Christian faith are a mystery, knowing what is expected of Christians in the way of behavior is not. Colossions 3 tells us we are new creations in Christ and we are to put off the old man…there is also a list of items we are too put away…to include sexual immorality.

          If a person is tempted sexually then part of our duty as Christians is to deny ourselves, pick up our cross and follow Jesus. Unfortunately our society forgets the deny ourselves part and have replaced it with excuse ourselves. Our society wants to ignore large swaths of scripture because it is too inconvenient or too convicting to accept.

          We either follow all of scripture or we can follow none…there is no half-way.

          I wish you all the best.

          • Bruce Garner says

            Thank you for your response back, Jim. I would simply invite you to look at Romans and similar writings from Paul in a different light. Look at them from the total context in which they were written rather than verses taken out of context. What Paul identifies as sin are not so much related to sexuality as they are to relationship. The so-called “sexual sins” are just a part of a longer list related to relationships. Any relationship, including a heterosexual marriage, can be sinful. If is the quality of the relationship that removes it from the arena of sin. A marriage, for example, that is abusive, coercive, or exploitive is sinful regardless of the fact that the church may have “blessed” it. Sexual relationships, any relationships, can be sinful if they fall into the category of abusive, exploitive or coercive. The letters to the churches were also written to specific churches addressing problems and issues they were having based a lot on where they were located. Each was fairly unique as evidenced by what was written to them. They were not originally addressed to the “entire church” but to individual churches that found themselves in a minority position in a secular world. So, the blanket statement that sexual activity is sinful is not helpful. Nor is it helpful when some claim that the Biblical standard has always been one man and one woman. The Hebrew Scriptures regularly hold up the lives of the patriarchs, most of whom had more than one wife as well as other women. The reality was one man and as many women as he could afford. Even the New Testament does not prohibit what we call polygamy, except for those called to the offices of bishop and deacon. That requirement is not placed on anyone else. Context is important or we may miss the point of what the Bible is really trying to teach us. Thanks again….even though we will probably continue to agree to disagree. Bruce

    • L says

      That is a great story and it gives me hope w/ the things I am endeavoring to do at Good Hope. Those very things Thom you have point to are the very things I have begun to share and see the need to do. I am now getting the church involve in the community in which it lives. Also, I am beginning the year w/ a youth church. Please join w/ me in prayer concerning this. I really want to make a push to win souls for Jesus.

      Blessings and peace both to you Bruce and Thom

  2. Jonathon Grant says

    I’ve been praying about a meaningful response since the prior post on this subject.

    I love Dr. Thom’s statement “major shifts in attitude and a new posture of the heart”. Truer words could not be spoken on the matter.

    The turn around in any organization begins with the leadership. The first step is confession. Seriously, we must acknowledge where we are in relation to where God wants us. Where He wants us is abundantly clear in His word. The next step forward is a personal revival for the Pastor and the leadership team. This revival is impossible without acknowledging where you are and without also identifying those issues or behaviors that took you there.

    Personal revival begins with prayer and a “new posture of the heart” as Dr. Thom indicated. Have you sought guidance from God? Has God given you a fresh vision for the direction of the local church? Has God surrounded you with men who pray with you regularly and have a shared vision on the way forward? If not, have you sought these men out? If you don’t start here, you haven’t started at all. Pastor, you were not called to walk alone in the good work Jesus has for you.

    Is your church relevant? Relevance is about context, not compromise. Do your methodologies match the people that God is bringing through the door? Do you preach and teach the gospel and purpose of the church? How is the “unity and community” within the local assembly? Speaking of community, what presence do you have in your community beyond the footprint of your campus?

    Do you have an outward focus, or are the majority of your programs designed to serve internally? This matter is easily identifiable through the church budget and a quick overview of the allocation of time, money and talent. We are supposed to be making disciples that make disciples for the glory of God. Are we doing that, or are we just making fat sheep fatter? We’re supposed to be “out there”.

    Much could be written from recent experience I had working with a church that was dying a slow and grueling death, but I suppose that would take up an entire book.

    Friend, it starts with you. Do you and your church need a revival, or do you need resurrection? Only God can breath new life into something that is dead or dying. Remember, only healthy things grow.

    Be encouraged. We are victors, not victims of this age. Speak truth into those dry bones and watch what the God of wonders can do!

    • says

      Good words, Jonathon, but change doesn’t always start with leadership. Overall, that is probably the best place to start, but God will start with whomever in the congregation is willing to make change happen. He or she should then. in prayer, take this leading to the leadership (or leader) of the church and see how the Holy Spirit will move through both parties to enact change and bring life to a dying congregation.

      • Jonathon Grant says

        Thank you Chris. You are right, God can and does use any catalyst He chooses to prompt a change in direction. The work of the Holy Spirit is a true and wonderful mystery.

        My broader point was that; if the leadership doesn’t change, there will be a change in leadership. I don’t know why God allows some churches to decline and die, while others, He makes specific provision for by sending an agent of change. What I do know is that significant change needs to happen in the hearts of the leaders. Otherwise, the message and fresh fire brought by the inspired soul who had the temerity to come forward will be DOA.

        I see you come from a very outward focused church. May God bless you abundantly as you do His good work!

        • says

          Thanks, Jonathan!
          One thought- does God allow some churches to decline and die? Or do the parishioners take care of that on their own?
          God will work to keep His local churches alive and spiritually strong, but this moving of the Spirit can be resisted- even for years. If so, the church will be torn down by the hands of its own members. it sounds amazing, but when churches do things, “like we did when i was a kid” or refuse to become involved in their community, this is what can happen.
          Yes, leadership must come on board for true change to occur, and hopefully if the leadership does not change, then they will step aside voluntarily for someone else or God will most likely make a move.

  3. Ken Jerome says

    Thank you for this insight. I have just moved, as an Intentional Interim Pastor to a church like this. I can use this along with your “Autopsy of a Dead Church”. I like your last statement: “Can the reversal take place?” Our hope is not in the acts of men – but in the movement of God. My life is built around “wait and see”.

  4. says

    God blessed me to be a part of what we half-jokingly and half-truthfully call the “repotting” of a church. Our little church went from an anemic 25-30 members to hitting 135 just last Sunday. I think we did qualify as one of those (terminally ill) sick churches that you’re talking about.

    It all started with a pastor who came to us from a much more vibrant church. He was the first willing heart. Slowly but surely, others showed up. My wife returned to the church after college and I began to attend with her.

    The church hit rock-bottom in more ways than one, and I recall a few last-ditch meetings with the small congregation as we talked about either dying or changing. These folks, who tended towards the more experienced end of the age spectrum show an incredibly willing heart to do whatever (emphasis on whatever, shy of sinning) it took to change the church.

    Now our nursery cup runneth over, so to say. Numerous young families have shown up, and God clearly changed the heart of this church through his willing servants. It is a miracle, I have seen it and I testify to it as only a miracle He could pull off.

    The change at our church verifies, almost to a T, the list above. We started with an acknowledgment that we were failing as a church. We began to pray earnestly and things began to happen that we had no control over. The only thing I would flip (and this is more of an abstraction) is #2 and #3, because we began to pray for the change that we desired. I think God had already implanted a vision of what could be at this time, and it was like there was a general awakening to this.

    Thanks for sharing this Dr. Rainer, and by the way, our church is called New Hope. It exists, and most importantly He gives grace and will change the whole game.

  5. Pastor Biker Doood says

    This is a great summary. Earlier this year I left a church after 12 years because I realized that the systemic, historic, and cultural dysfunctions and problems were not going to be be addressed, in spite of my meager efforts.

    My departure caused such a significant crisis in the congregation that they demanded that the leadership face the grim realities. After several false starts, leadership finally made contact with a skilled consultant, and seem to have committed themselves to a process of genuine change.

    I say “seem to have” because the church’s history is one of big promises, sincere intentions, and zero follow through. Only time will tell if they will actually do what needs to be done, even after paying for very expensive help.

    *My name is not Biker Doood, by the way. The church deserves its privacy as it struggles through this time.

  6. Matthew Haywood says

    I agree with the steps presented and I think the number one impact on declining churches will be if the leader is willing to change and spend long hours in prayer and the Word. I would also say that one thing churches need to do that I did not see in the article is to preach the whole counsel of God. The Puritans and even the Anglicans did this before steering England away from Catholicism. They let the Word do the work. I think the steps mentioned above with an outward focus of evangelism and solid biblical preaching will transform a dying church (or get the pastor promoted to a healthier church, if you know what I mean). I also think that Dr. Rainer may need to go grab a cup of coffee and put on some happy music! You seem a little “half-empty” in the article. Just kidding! Thanks for your ministry and your blog posts! God bless!

  7. Dave says

    I have been serving a declining church for a few years now, and agree with your posts these past few days. We are well into the stages of death and if something does not happen soon, there will be no hope. It is interesting to see your reference to Nehemiah. Last week I began a sermon series called Rebuilding Walls talking about the state of the church in America. One key point I noticed in Nehemiah chapter 1, that I would add to your four shifts in attitudes, is confession of sin. One man (Nehemiah) approached God on behalf of a nation, one man confessed sin, both personal as well as the sin of a nation and one man, began to claim the promises of God.

    As I thought about the sin of the church in America, the list is long. I would be curious to hear from others to hear their list of the sins of the church. Just a thought. However, if we don’t start with confession, I’m not sure how much further we will get.
    This is where we are as a church right now. We just finished a week of prayer and fasting that was wonderful. There was a movement of the Holy Spirit among some of the church and yet there are still leaders and power brokers in the church who refuse to confess, or change. It was interesting that most of them did not even show up to the prayer times and the participation of those who did, was virtually non existent.
    There is hope, but without the confession of sin here, I do not see much change.

  8. DA says

    The four action plan steps are absolutely vital. The first one is sadly where most dying churches get in trouble. Unfortunately, many dying churches run in the black even with large amts in the bank and therefore are not driven by economics to see their need or change.
    My observation and experience would suggest that until a church is in economic crisis they will not see a need to radically change. I have pastored 4/4 churches in this catagory, Including where I am now. I was forced to leave two and left the other probably prematurely over things that were not that bad in retrospect. But the other two are definately on their way out apart from a ‘Red Sea’ level miracle.

    But the dying church I am pastoring now is more hopeful because:
    1) They do not have large amts of $$ in the bank and therefore to feel financial pressure for the future.
    2) There are many older memebers willing to change as well as some younger families willing to be in leadership.
    3) There are lots of people around us to reach and we have an outstanding location and a decent facility and reputation. Other places I have served had 1, the other or neither.
    I owe a lot to the interim pastor who served here and pushed the envelope for change before I came. For this I am grateful. But I can feel the clock ticking…

    • Mark F says

      DA, I think you have it here. I am just over one year into a pastorate that to this point does not want to change from the dying church that it is. From what I have seen our number 1 problem is that as long as 4 church leaders can continue to give enough money to provide for the churches every desire then this church does not have a problem.

      Recently I spoke to one of our board members about how I am not even being allowed to do my job further than preaching for the services without micromanagement. I laid it out that as a younger pastor I have the time to do kingdom work and if I am not going to be allowed to do it here then I am leaving. I walked into a board meeting last week ready to tell them that but the meeting was canceled because less than half of our leaders showed up.

      Interestingly enough with two leaders knowing my feelings on this, I have had a completely different second half of the week. I intend to have the discussion with them this week but I see where Gpd has used the last week to prepare hearts to be open to leading and to seeing our issues at the church.

      It is my hope and prayer that we do not continue to follow the idea of “those who donate most make the decision.”

      • Lemuel Billingsley says

        I agree whole heartedly that it should not be that way. I hope that you will be able to empower the church in their responsibility towards God in stewardship of time, gifts, and tithes. I also hope that as you teach and preach the Word of God that it will position others in seeing that the Church centers itself around the whole and not just a few. Further, God is the one that is to be glorified in all that is done and as shepherd you are responsible for the flock of God there.
        I pray for your strength and vitality in the service in Jesus name

        Lemuel

  9. Steve Miller says

    So far most churches which I have been a part of which are in decline are very interested in change. What they mean by change is they are very willing for God to change the negative results(declining membership, lower giving, fewer volunteers, staff resignations) they see in their churches. What they aren’t willing to change is the methodology which is causing those results. They don’t see their actions (or inactions) as being culpable for the negative results. The view themselves as victims of negative circumstances(declining culture, bad economy, poor education) which have happened to them.

    How do you get a victim mentality to switch to a repentant culpable mindset?

  10. says

    I’m leading a church in a hopeful turnaround. Your info is quite helpful for me to share w/ lay leaders and check my thinking. In a previous blog on stages of sick churches the categories go from health to very sick. I’m in a church that’s unhealthy but not very sick yet. We need some help for the unhealthy/sick church who is not yet very sick so we can do a turnaround before it is very sick. Our members know we have a huge problem but many resist change.

  11. Amanda Demars says

    Following your posts on sick/dying churches has been eye opening for me. I recognize symptoms of our church, but until reading through the comments, I didn’t realize the problem was not unique to small churches in rural areas. We face the same battles our school, business, and community are facing due to aging/declining population in our area, but that does not excuse us from the Great Commission and the need to restore our health as a church. Thank you for your concern and help for us sick churches.

  12. says

    Great post, Thom! You accurately state, “Most churches move toward death because they refuse to acknowledge their condition.” Yes, denial is a defense mechanism for those who do not want to change (e.g., an alcoholic who declares, “I don’t have a drinking problem. I can quit at any time I want).”

    But, on the other hand, some churches move toward death because they know it and don’t care. They see the weekly stats. These kinds of church members are like people who pick up a pack of cigarettes, and read on the label, “You are going to get lung cancer and die.” Yet, people still buy the cigarettes! Some dying churches are comprised of persons who (1) are unregenerate or (2) have lost their purpose for existence! They are solely concerned about maintaining their social relationships in the church.

    As you state, the key is for GOD to raise up a risk-taking faith leader who will pay a very high price to implement dramatic changes that will either (1) get him fired or (2) result in a supernatural resurrection of the congregation.

    FYI, Charles Duhigg’s book, The Power of Habit: Why We Do What We Do In Life And Business, while it is a secular book, helps provide readers (and pastors) with insight in regard to habits and how they can be transformed.

    • Thom Rainer says

      Mike –

      I recently read “The Power of Habit.” I fully agree. Far too many churches won’t change their “habits.”

  13. says

    Enjoyed the article and will agree that all 4 elements are vital to reversing a negative trend. I have had the distinct pleasure of pastoring a church 40 years in existence go from barely making it week to week to averaging 755 in 2 1/2 years. We are now at two Sunday morning services and moving to a third at the first of the new year. It has been incredible to watch God move in such a powerful way.
    I have a different train of thought on this subject. Churches that are maintaining the status quo in my opinion are harder to see significant growth because they are not yet in desperate mode. Let me explain our example. .. When you have almost experienced death, you will be ready to do what is necessary to live. This is exactly what happened for our church. When I became pastor 2.5 years ago our folks were ready to put aside personal preferences to unite under one vision and we are still seeing it today. This may illustrate it best…our church had been known under one name for 40 years but when it was time they voted 100 percent to change the name so as to keep moving forward . Sacred cows were now not as important as souls being added to the kingdom. Sometimes there must be a death to have a resurrection.

  14. Anonymous says

    A year ago, my husband and I made the heart wrenching decision to leave the church where we were married just one month prior. We had joined the church hopeful for revitalization, had served in every capacity that we could (from teaching to facility maintenance, but we reached a point where we realized that the pastor was not a shepherd, but rather a bulldozer. The pulpit was his political platform and the ambition to grow the church numerically overtook spiritual health. Any opposition was met with accusations of the church members not wanting to change or grow. I say all of this not to disagree with what you’ve said, but to caution pastors. Please don’t let the desire to see a church grow turn you away from the task of shepherding those you’ve already been entrusted to serve.

    Please know that I am remaining anonymous so as to not antagonize my former pastor should he read this. My goal is not to pick a fight.

  15. exhaustedmom says

    I really could use some
    advice, because I just don’t know what to do. My family (husband, myself
    and two daughters ages 2 and 4) joined a church about 1.5 years ago
    because we felt the need to connect more closely to God under an expert
    (read: Pastor)’s direction. I was raised as another Protestant
    denomination and attended Christian school, my husband’s background was
    more limited. We chose the small community church that I used to drive
    by as a child. As the pastor has only been in the Church for a few years
    (we are one of the major denominations that tends to rotate them
    around) the membership has steadily declined. I joined the church
    because of the warmth of the members. But the pastor is very
    standoffish, not exactly the guy I want to give me comfort if I were on
    my death bed. The members and the pastor are constantly at odds. To make
    matters worse, some of the long-time members have resigned their
    positions on the Church Council and my husband was asked to take up a
    position. I did not tell him either way what to do, but he did accept
    the position as Treasurer. I am a doctor and the primary breadwinner, my
    husband does well for himself, but I am the one giving out the money
    every week. I run a small business and now I have had to become the
    “assistant treasurer” because he needs help in calculating and paying
    the taxes for the staff and pastor (mainly the time it takes to deal
    with the irs, state, etc…). This is all so tiring on top of the taking
    my kids to activities (not overscheduled, just the basics like learning
    to swim). The most tiring part is the psychological part. If we leave I
    will feel like we are abandoning our local church, but I just cannot
    take the tension anymore. The local bishop and church leaders have not
    been helpful in the congregation’s repeated requests to change pastors.
    While on the one hand I feel like some members have issues to deal with
    and no one will ever be good enough for them, on the other hand the
    pastor is not exactly a people person and in the area we live in there
    is a lot of competition with other local churchs and the megachurches.
    People in our area want charisma. I just want peace. I have not written
    to the local bishop myself, but maybe that would help. Thoughts?

  16. CJ says

    Dr. Rainer,

    My own experience of a sick church informs me that there are 3 very important principles to keep in mind:
    1. Very sick places must have radical surgery, nothing less. The difficulty is that the pillars of sickness won’t allow it, instead rotating leadership that will chaplain the sick ones on into more decline and more sickness.
    2. Overseers, such as Bishops normally embrace the sick members and ignore the overall problem. Without cover, the leader is doomed.
    3. There are always “key” players in the congregation that are experts in keeping the patterns of sickness alive and well. They will bite if you get too close, and only an outside authority (with guts) can prevail. Any other approach always fails. Either the leader waits them out, hoping no one takes their place, or starts the surgery hoping the patient (who is not asleep) won’t jump off the table and rally the troops against the surgeon.

    Also, people in the pew have NO way to respond. They “feel” the anxiety, stress, and they very often hear the gossip, but if they go to the Pastor he can’t say anything. Those in control hold all the cards. If they call the Bishop, he will simply swap out the leader for someone “more pastoral.” (read “who will love those wounded by the leader – who is healthy.”) Again, unless an outside authority intervenes, (who is willing to lose the cancer….) it is a hopeless endeavor. If a church does turn around easier than this, it really only had a cold. Most of the 40% of the unhealthy and declining churches have a cancer. I know it doesn’t sound encouraging, but it is the devil’s best kept secret.
    In Him,
    Pastor C

  17. Murray Phillips says

    We have to realize that all communities of faith have “life-cycles” be they a year old or been in existence for centuries. If we look at the New Testament, are any of the original churches Paul founded and wrote to in existence today in 2013?

    • Lemuel Billingsley says

      Again, on this issue of the sick or dying Church. This is what I have found to be very true; that when leadership leads the people of God in prayer for the guidance of the Holy Spirit. I believe that God will readily begin to speak to the Church in ways that will indeed revitalize it. We see this in Scripture that when they would pray God would move (e.g. 2 Chron 20). When you really glaze into the event of that day, the king had been in sin himself by allying himself w/ wicked Ahab. I believe God was allowing the other kings of that day to come against Jehoshaphat, it was when he set himself to seek the Lord and proclaimed a fast for he and the people that they drew near to God and He in turn drew near to them with deliverance.
      In this day of 2013, we still serve the same God that is able to move w/in us and give us the help we need to become healthy and strong as His church today. We do not have to be mega, but wholly seeking the Lord in our hearts and making His Word the leading force of our agenda today.
      I know that His love for us is just as everlasting now as it was then in the days of Jeremiah. For many worshipers today we have gone from righteousness to traditionalism and that will not work.

Trackbacks

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


one + = 9