One sure sign of the times has to do with the contemporary Christian church as well as our so-called religious leaders.
We know that false Bible teachers will arise who are money hungry. These same individuals will be smooth talkers (telling us what we want to hear instead of what we need to hear), they will have many followers, and they will slur the Christian faith (2 Peter 2:1-3).
Sadly, we already find ourselves in the midst of of this prophetic fulfillment as I'm sure that many of you may already attend one of these mega-churches with a larger-than-life leader.
There are many directions I could take today's commentary, but in the spirit of learning to crawl before we can walk...I wanted to first bring attention to a common problem with the church as well as to a new book I just learned about.
It's called "Reveal: Where Are You?" and it tells the story of the mega-church Willow Creek's discovery that the "seeker-friendly" church model (telling us what we want to hear instead of what we need to hear; more show than substance) fails to
Chicago-based Willow Creek Community Church, deemed to be the largest church in America at one time, undertook a 3-year landmark research project to determine if their methodology of appealing to the unchurched via a contemporary seeker-friendly model of church ministry was effective.
Their results? Startling! Long-held assumptions crumbled!
Their findings revealed that their strategy was successful at putting people in pews, but failed miserably at making disciples of Jesus Christ. To put it in the words of one leader, "their discipleship was ten miles wide, but one inch deep."
Senior pastor Bill Hybels, in an amazing admission, said:
"Some of the stuff we have put millions of dollars into thinking it would really help our people grow spiritually, when the data actually came back it wasn't helping people that much. Other things that we didn't put that much money into and didn't put much staff against is stuff our people are crying out for."
Now, Willow Creek invites you to learn from its mistakes and what they plan to do differently. It's a wake up call to the mega-church, seeker-sensitive churches of America.
From the little bit I know about this work, if you're a pastor, you need to read this book. If you're a business leader who has leadership responsibilities in a local church, you need to read this book. If you're like me and you just desire greater spiritual influence through let's say an online ministry like this then you need to read this book.
I haven't read it, but I'll be ordering it really soon. Stay tuned for my review and findings in a few weeks.
What We're Praying/Talking About
Our faith in action, or our small contribution in trying to apply what we're taught in Hebrews 5-6 and James 2:17-26 for the benefit of our dear brothers and sisters within the Body of Christ...
Look Up Fellowship Media [LUFM]
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