Summary: A message explaining how the church grows and why it grows. That same message is applicable to individual Christians, too. Audio will be placed at www.sermonlist.com
What is it that enables a plant to grow tall? It is the roots. The deeper and stronger the root system, the taller and wider that plant can grow. You can see what I am getting at if you will try to imagine a tall oak tree with the root system of a dandelion. That would be impossible, wouldn’t it?
The same is true with Christians. The deeper one’s faith is, the wider they will be able to reach. Our purpose is not to stay in the same place forever, but to always be moving about. You have heard me say that we need to get out of our comfort zones. Our goal is to continually expand our comfort zones, and in so doing, we will always be more comfortable in doing more.
A rubber bands only purpose in life is to stretch. It fulfills its purpose only when it is being pulled into a larger size. And Christians fulfill their purposes when they expand their boundaries, too.
And this goes for churches, too. CrossRoads is getting ready for a big move. We are stepping out to enable us to become more of what we were intended to be. We are going to reach wider, for the intended purpose of reaching more people for the glory of Jesus Christ. Last week, I spoke about how glory is due His name. How better to glorify the name of Jesus than to reach more people for Him?
I have read studies that show how churches become stagnant and, for all intent and purposes, useless for the glory of God. Let me share some information with you.
Most church plants never grow beyond a few new people. And after a few years, they wither and die. Of those that do grow, most become flat and stale after just five years. And then the rest, which is in the minority, grow to become the spiritual movers and shakers of their community. What causes this to happen?
In almost every case, when churches become stagnant, it is because they are filled with people who have become spiritually stagnant. These people have shifted their focus from the Lord onto themselves. These people make up churches that no longer look outside in devotion, but inward for comfort. Churches that DO have growth actually focus outward. They reach out into the community to make a difference for the people in that community.
Someone said that the purpose of the church is to feed the people in the church. That is both right and wrong. The purpose of the church, or at least the purpose of CrossRoads, is to prepare the people in the church to reach wider. In other words, we need to prepare you so that you can reach out to others in the name of Jesus.
The more a church grows, the more problems they will encounter. For instance;
.... Growing churches have parking problems, other churches don’t.
.... Growing churches have kids running around making a lot of noise, other churches don’t.
.... Growing churches have more expenses than money, some other churches don’t.
.... Growing churches have to depend on the Lord for everything they have, others don’t.
.... In growing churches you don’t always know everybody’s name, in other churches you’ve only seen the same people there for years.