I recently heard of an English Bishop compare the mission of the church to that of a museum: "I suppose... keeping alive aspects of the Christian heritage for those who are interested in that sort of thing..." Statistics seem to back him up: last year, 2.7m church members left, never to come back again. Every year in America 4,000 churches close their doors (while only 1,000 are planted). There are now half as many churches as there were a hundred years ago. Is this the church's last hurray? Will our generation witness the death of the church? A recent poll revealed that less than 9% of Americans have a Christian world view (believing that the Bible is accurate, in a literal hell / heaven, that salvation is only by grace). Does church really still work? The honest answer is yes and no. Some do and some don't. The difference: great churches are communities where the new covenant has united membership in a common grace and a common purpose. (Ephesians 2:14-22)
Have you noticed that our current generation (especially of Americans) has no concept of control. We are out-of-control. The drastic rise in credit card induced bankruptcies, divorce attorneys, and mini-riots are skyrocketing. Road rage, impulse spending, and all sorts of addictions are seen as ‘normal’ in our society… even in the church! We have totally lost the concept of temperance: the moderation of passions and appetites (Galatians 5:22-23).
Like anything else in the church (and life), the things that work best didn't just get here by accident. They were carefully created. Great ministries don't just spring up one day accidentally - they must be prayed over and thought through. The Media Ministry is no exception. It won't be successful without God-honoring goals. It'll surely crash if left to auto-pilot!
Paul’s prayer (Ephesians 3:14-21) begins with “your glory” (v. 13b) and ends with “glory” (v. 21) This is a simple passage on how to pray for each other. These four things give God the glory He deserves/desires:
Idolatry is not just doing bad things; it’s not committing crimes. Idolatry is making good things the ultimate; it is elevating good above its proper place; it is prizing anything above who God is or what God wants for you. Christians don’t usually forsake their God to accept other gods, they just use One to get more from the other. For example, we might pray to Almighty God to supply more of what we really crave – even though it might be spiritually unhealthy.
Ever ask a child to fill up your glass? Filled to capacity, carrying it across the room - -trying not to spill it. What makes Christianity different from other religions? Grace – CS Lewis “Sufficient” – more than adequate; grace >= the need Its Enough for our Salvation Ephesians 2:4-8 Rags to Riches chapter – … Continue reading To the Brim