May 27th – Don’t make it difficult



Any church community which doesn’t take notice of the cultural patterns around it at once becomes an alien island surrounded by an ever turbulent sea. Each church should examine and ask, how do people live around here? What makes them tick? What are the real issues just beyond the church’s reach? What do the surrounding people really need? Before opening a youth club, find out about the children in your vicinity:before organising a mission, find out what kind of mission is really needed.Blindly doing something usually does more harm than good.
It may seem dazzlingly obvious, but so often churches hear about what some other church has done with some apparent success and they buy into that approach.That’s like saying because they enjoyed tripe and onions in Accrington we will put it on the menu at Ascot. Now Ascot folk may like trip and onions-but equally they might not.The assumption that what works in one community must work in another-is a false one.

There are no short cuts for growing churches:no instant recipes:and surprisingly there are no substitutes for Christian believers making real and lasting friendships with their neighbours-not to preach at them, but simply to befriend them. It is not church growth to entice sheep into your flock from the folds of other flocks:that’s sheep rustling.
There is no substitute for the vision which Jesus has for lost people, and no future for any church which merely wants to hold on to what it’s got. James, the Lord’s brother, who became a Christian believer after the resurrection, and became leader of the Jerusalem church, said,
“It is my judgement, therefore, that we should not make it difficult for the Gentiles who are turning to God.” Acts 15:19
Jesus always says to Christians: ‘Order your church to make it easy for outsiders to come to me”.

A Prayer:
Almighty God, whose compassion ever urges your people to order your church to make it easy for outsiders to come to Jesus,enable us, your people, so to do, for your sake and ours.

Now read Acts Chapter 15.

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Thought 4 The Day

What ever your heart clings to and confides in, that is really your God. (Martin Luther)

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