Wednesday, November 19, 2008

The Church Advances as the World Retreats

One of the things that is obvious in almost every segment of society is the new value of security against global economic collapse.  The papers and news channels are full of stories of layoffs and pullbacks and every church I know of is bracing for this coming economic earthquake.  I have to tell you frankly that churches cutting back right now really ticks me off.  I know that the economy is crashing, and that people who tithe will have less to give, but our trust is not in the offering plate.  Right now, as the ways of the world display their lack of ability to meet the real needs of people, the church needs to advance.  It has been our message for years that people not put their trust in temporary physical things of this world, and to store up for themselves treasures in heaven, where moth and rust do not corrupt, and markets do not fall.  Now is the time when many churches, rather than pulling back, need to move forward.  I am not suggesting that they blow the bank account, but the church of Christ is the medic that runs against the flow of the retreating army to meet the real needs of people who have been wounded on the front line.  Here are some things that we can do:

1. Teach "Koinonia" Fellowship - The church exists to meet the needs of the body.  This is the time when the people can come together an meet one another's needs.
2. Show Some Love - Benevolent giving should increase to meet the felt needs of the community with the hopes that they will realize their true need for Christ.
3. Preach Heaven - We are not of this world, and in fact we were created for eternity.  Preach about the need to know we have a home in heaven and how this world will not satisfy.
4. Teach People How to Live by Faith - They are ready to listen.
5. Missions - Recession in America means going to basic cable.  Show them the rest of the world.

Cornerstone, we refuse to run.  This economic downturn and fear of recession means that church becomes more important than ever in our community.  I believe that much of the numerical growth we have seen in the last month is due to people returning to God, and we as a church must and will be ready.  We will not retreat just because the rest of the world is, in fact we will advance.  I believe that these may be dark days for our generation, but our community has never needed the church and its message of salvation through Christ more.  We need all hands on deck as we move forward.