Early in any stage of revitalization, reorganization, reinvigoration or whatever you want to call it, it is easy to have that sense of excitement. There is urgency in your work and little victories seem like great triumphs. And then, time wears on.
Membership, financial resources, and influence are in decline, even steep decline, in many congregations. Now fewer people with fewer resources and less influence remain to do what the larger, more prosperous, and more favored church failed to do …
What would happen if we intentionally planned out our congregation’s work and set about raising up those leaders which God has placed in our midst? Imagine the possibilities!
The purpose of the Remnant Church is to bear witness of Jesus in our world so that others would come to faith just as we have. God’s purpose in doing this through a remnant is that we would give Him the honor, praise, and glory that is due Him.
Being the Remnant Church is a call to the Cross … Our Savior’s urgent plea for His Remnant Church — for our sake as well as for the sake of those who are perishing around us — is “Don’t go to Egypt.”
What a way to consider our calling as citizens of His kingdom…to “faithfully fulfill your role as His witness” wherever and whenever He sends us.
Demographically speaking, the future is bleak for the LCMS. And that is the future that the devil would have us believe.
Neighborhood renewal is a good thing for the church if it is a grassroots effort that does not displace the neighbors we are called to serve. And if done well there is an influx of new neighbors … but how will we engage them?
Oh that little town of Bethlehem, so long ago…where darkness would be shattered by the advent of The Everlasting Light.
The church can be the church she is called to be without being liked, appreciated, or favored by the culture in which she exists. Indeed, we may even find that we can more readily be a faithful church when we are not liked, appreciated, or favored.
Tonight in our small burg just like many other places around our great nation, there will be a football game. But here, it won’t be any ordinary game, it’s the first round of district play so all eyes are on the big prize. No doubt, it’s going to be Epic!
Let us with great boldness, no matter where the Lord of the Church has placed us, join that great army to labor for the harvest! I pray the Lord of the Harvest blesses you with the sight to “see” the fields around you, the strength and wisdom to share His love and the joy that comes from serving Him.
If the word ‘missional’ moves us to better serve Christ and our neighbor through a renewed devotion to living out the Gospel and a renewed commitment to answer our call to proclaim it, then it is serving us well.
“Why do we need to keep these rural and small town churches going? Aren’t they just a drag on our resources?” To this I answer, “We can’t live without them”!
Revitalizing the declining church is a call to preserve our confession rather than our institution.
“Revitalization” isn’t the best word to describe the work of helping congregations be healthy and whole, but it’s the one we use. Once we get past the stigma of the word, we discover that every congregation needs “revitalization.”