So many conversations begin and end with, "The church is dying." Sometimes the chat is to change worship styles to bring in the "younger crowd." A friend of mine from Tennesse posted the following that I thought was interesting. The rest of this article is written by him.
"The seeker sensitive movement of the 90s and early 2000s thrived in a culture with some semblance of vestige of Christian commitments. So they could entertain and do cute stuff.
"We live in different times.
"Churches that will thrive in our present age are those that provide substantive teaching in all aspects of their ministries: worship, kids, students, and discipleship.
"Genuine believers are craving depth and want to be equipped to stay the course in the chaos of our culture.
"People need churches that understand the times. We're in white-water rapids, not calm pool conditions. Everything in their lives feels unstable. They want their church to anchor them in the truth. Ministries that don't match that reality will feel disconnected from their lives.
" - So sing rich theology.
- Recite truth through creeds.
- Teach the Bible, explain theology.
- Weave apologetics into all things.
- Practice what you preach through mercy ministries and missions.
- Celebrate communion.
- Ground kids and students in theology and apologetics.
"Churches that commit themselves to doing these things (even imperfectly), and understand the times, will continue to reach people and become a refuge for folks that feel exhausted by the weekly grind of being a Christain in this culture.
"The sheep will find green pastures.
"And this isn't just about worship gatherings. It's about our plan for discipleship and equipping the saints. It includes our witness in the community we live in, and the nations.
"We're not only called to help people survive the white-water rapids, but to make them lifeguards.
"There will always be goats drawn to self-help entertainment style churches. But the true sheep will crave churches of substance -- where the Triune God is exalted in faith and practice, word and deed.
"The future belongs to these churches. May their tribe increase."