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prov·o·ca·tion - something that provokes, arouses, or stimulates. pant - to long eagerly; yearn. a collection of thoughts intended to provoke and inspire. these posts are hoping to encourage people to think, especially Christians, and pant even harder for the waterbrooks of the Lord. If you are not a believer in Christ Jesus, I welcome your perspective and encourage your investigation on these matters.

Friday, July 08, 2005

Barriers, Buildings, Budgets, and Big Names

I got this email yesterday. Check out what the gist of it is: ARE YOU STUCK? Let’s Get Growing! There are two things we all have in common: We want to grow our churches for God’s glory. We inevitably run into Growth Barriers along the way! No matter what barrier has you stuck, teaching to help you grow through is finally here! Nelson Searcy, church growth strategist and founding pastor of The Journey Church of the City in NYC, has developed essential teaching to help you break through the barriers that are holding you back from God’s best! These Breaking Growth Barriers CDs are available for churches of all levels and include dynamic, applicable teaching on: · Why growth barriers must be broken · Structuring your staff and volunteers for growth · Top challenges of pushing past specific barriers · Principles for growing as God intends Choose the CD that best suits the next level of ministry your church is striving for… Breaking the 65 Barrier $12 Breaking the 125 Barrier $15 Breaking the 250 Barrier $15 Breaking the 500 Barrier $15 Are You Really Stuck? Check out a LIVE Breaking Growth Barriers Workshop! Nelson Searcy invites you to a power-packed workshop on Breaking Growth Barriers. In this day-long seminar, you will have the chance to delve deeper into the barriers holding your growth at bay. The workshop will offer intensive teaching on: How to see and break through the nine most common growth barriers Pouring the foundation for solid growth in the future What growing churches don’t do Where do I go from here? Clear next steps. Short Commentary What concerns me today is that so many churches have bought into this church growth mentality that turns the bride of Christ into another pragmatic experiment or project. Is this how we are to view God's church? Don't get me wrong: I am for church growth because Christ will add to his church, but is this what he is talking about when he said that? Breaking the 125 barrier - are you kidding me? Is this how far we have plunged into superficiality and "measuring success"? The majority of churches today are under 100 on Sunday, and they are being scolded and made fun of by larger churches because of their size. I feel like we are in middle school all over again - only that this time it is not the size of your bicep but your budget and building. We have become so mesmerized over numbers and names that we feel like we have to have a big name personality as our pastor and the biggest building on the block to give us clout. The more I see of this church growth movement, the less I see of the kingdom of God and the more of the marketing schemes of corporate America. The last question on the email is, "Where do I go from here?" I have an answer for you - the Bible. But it appears that the Bible is not efficient enough (I guess because of its message), so we are left to this, and Wal-Mart supercenters as our models for spiritual malls of America.

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