I’ve been reflecting a lot on church and mission, particularly the local church since I serve as a minister with a local church. Any ways, here’s a few thoughts that keep passing through my mind
- The local church must be different than just another local social-club with a little bit of religious ceremony sprinkled in on Sunday’s. Fellowship and charitable deeds are good but the church is called to more.
- The church is called to live as a faithful witness, as truth-tellers, preaching and embodying the gospel to it’s community, which is something that the local Rotary Club cannot do.
- However, the church must be healthy. Just as unhealthy people only spread unhealthy germs, so also does an unhealthy church. So is the local church healthy? The answer to that question must shape what we do next as pastors.
- According to minister Trey Morgan, the last eight words of a dying church are, “But we’ve never done it that way before” (read more about that here). Sadly, I think he’s right.
- Actually sometimes it seems that what some of these churches are thinking is, “But we really don’t like it that way.” And so the mission of God is trumped again by personal preference. Sad indeed. Even more sad must be God. Did he really give his Son up in death for this?
- For any church to move forward it cannot sew a new patch on an old garment and pour new wine into old wineskins. Jesus told us that it will not work (cf Mk. 2:21-22), so why should this even be an issue? But it will because change is difficult.
- This is the tough part about ministry. So one question that keeps coming to mind is, “how much is my pain tolerance?”
What thoughts do you have?