How do we Grow Southminster?
Finishing up the Esther Sermon series makes me ask the question of myself and our church, “Has God brought us here for such a time as this?” Perhaps now is the time to step beyond Covid thinking and embrace the reality that God has called us into the next chapter of our ministry.
But what does it mean to “grow the church”? Can we simply keep doing the same things we have been, and expect a sudden shift in our decades long slide in membership and giving? Obviously not, but how do we move from where we are, to a place of growth?
There are lots of church growth books and seminars out there. The audiences all eagerly listen to passionate speakers who transformed their churches “We went from 50 to five thousand in two years.” “We had a budget of $45,000, and now we have three million.” “We had not baptized a new believer in 15 years, and now we baptized 30 on our recent trip to the Jordan River!” It is easy to get caught up and think: “If we can just do what they did, we can have that same level of success!”
All speakers rightly say there is “no one magic program” that will make our church grow. I feel God has called us (challenged us?) to action. Now is the time for Southminster to embrace the Spirit and act for such a time as this!
Now, while we have committed members, ample reserves of capital, and a great facility, we must dedicate ourselves to growing God’s ministry here. Remember though, no growth will happen without the Word planted in us. No transformation can happen apart from the power of the Holy Spirit within the whole church. Lastly, no ministry can happen without the Love of God in our hearts and hands. I know you know this, but it is worthy of repeating.
Take a look at this nautilus. Its perfect spiral is, to me, a vision of the divine order. Let’s use the shell’s spiral for our ministry model. Imagine Christ in the center, and that the spiral is our journey to the cross. Year after year, we journey getting closer and closer to Christ. Sometimes we stumble and sometimes we fall. Yet, each year we cycle through worship, scripture, prayer, drawing others in as we draw near to Christ.
Each month I’ll elaborate this ministry model. I pray that we might band together to see our vital and vibrant congregation continue to grow both in faith and in numbers in 2022.
This month, can you covenant with me to pray this prayer with me: “Dear God. Increase the ministry and outreach of my church, and help me to feel the joy of the Spirit as I do my part. Amen.” God is already at work and I am excited you are a part of it!