Statistics show us that the church of America has been in decline for more than 30 years. Even while the number of megachurches has exploded, the church is not growing.
I came across this cartoon that seems to sum up the American Church phenomenon fairly well…
Evangelism focuses on reaching unreached people groups. Sheep shifting grows ministries by recruiting Christians from other ministries.
One thing is for sure … the people who come to your church plant focused on meeting their own needs will just as quickly head out the door to the next show in town. You can rock, wear graphic t’s, and flash your tatts and build an attractional ministry. If liturgy is hip, wear robes and wave some incense. Attractional ministries attract.
The great commission really isn’t attractional. We are to go, live in the culture, rub shoulders and share life in Christ. The Great Commission doesn’t say, “Come see what we’re all about.” Instead it tells us to go.
As I wrestle with church planting, I’m not really interested in spending big bucks to send out glossy mailers, hang invitations on doorknobs and hype up a big show. I’m thinking I’d rather have a group of 20-30 people praying earnestly to reach unreached people for Jesus. I’m not really interested in the attractional show.
Still, It takes all types.
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Here’s a thought: why don’t churches focus on attracting mature, already discipled Christians? There are many of them out there looking for good churches and they are needed for evangelism. You don’t get genuine converts by tricking large crowds of nonchurchgoers into church, and then somehow convincing them to change. Converts need to be discipled and witnessed to by genuine Christians: they need to see the end product before they commit. Attempts to trick people into Christianity usually ends with the church converting to worldliness.
Couldn’t agree more! Mature Christians ache for churches that will allow them a partnership role.
Thanks for posting this image. It’s definitely true of my area where my wife and I are working on planting. I’m definitely reposting it. Thanks and God bless.