Now that we’re 8 years into this millenium, here are the 3 things I think churches must do in this pluralistic, postmodern, post-christendom world —
Tell the story. Read both the Old and New Testaments and the constant practice that emerges is that God’s people tell God’s story. The great story for Israel was the Exodus. Still is. The great story for the church sweeps from creation to recreation witnessed in the person of Jesus. I am convinced that we need to tell the story of God over and over. We need to tell it in our worship, our teaching, our daily living. I’ll say more about this later this year, and I’ve created a new category, The Story, just for that purpose.
Invite others. This is called evangelism, outreach, and witness. But the kind of inviting I’m talking about is not invitation to join the church or get baptized or even make a decision for Christ. It might include all those things, but has a unique perspective on the mission of God. And, I’m convinced if we learn how to really tell the story, then inviting others will not be the struggle that evangelism, outreach, and witness are now.
Bless the world. God called Abraham and blessed him to be a blessing to all the nations. Service to others, visiting the prisoners, healing the sick, doing justice for the poor, being peace to world in strife — these are ways of blessing the world.
Simple, Biblical — tell the story, invite others, bless the world. That’s what I’ll be doing in 2008. That’s what I’m going to lead my church to do. I’ll post our progress — successes, and failures — during this year. For me, these are the basic practices any church should do. What do you think?
5 thoughts on “3 Things Churches Must Do in 2008”
But this means we have to get our hands dirty. We have to leave the comfort of our four walls and go “out there” where it is messy. Where people’s lives are messy. We might actually have to love one another and give of ourselves. Oh no, we might have to become vunerable. We will have to stop judging those who don’t fit our perfect church mold.
There is a generation out there who has no idea what following Christ is all about. Mostly because we have failed miserably at modeling Jesus to them. In other words, they don’t want to be like us because we are inconsistent, unreliable, and self absorbed.
I agree whole heartedly with your list, but I am afraid that too many of us want to keep the light under a cover and hide it because we are afraid to get dirty.
And some of us want change to come right now.
Dee and ..gray, thanks for your comments. Yes, it will be messy, and yes, I am impatient myself. But I think we have made this church-thing way too complex when it is amazingly simple. Tell the story. Invite others. Bless the world. Thanks for your comments and drop in again soon.
How about a remix? Bless the world –> invite others –> tell the story.
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