Carey Nieuwhof generally has a lot of wisdom to share. This podcast interview reflects on an article he wrote entitled “* Reasons Why Most Churches Don’t Break The 200 Attendance Mark”. The page contains a link to that article as well as the interview.
It seems to me that a lot of what Carey shares is applicable to leadership across the board and isn’t specific to that 200 attendance barrier. Some of it conflicts with what we thought we were trained for and some of it might reveal insecurities in us. Some of it might be just what we need to hear.
List to the podcast here.
You might find it worthwhile subscribing to Carey Nieuwhof’s blog or podcasts and/or the weekly church leadership podcasts.
In my humble opinion, there is a great deal of confusion around about what the gospel is and that is reflected in much of our preaching.
Tom Reinke has suggested “Three Questions to Ask Before Listening To Any Sermon“. His questions are:
- How am I saved?
- What am I saved from?
- What am I saved for?
His desire is that people be discerning about what they hear.
Helpfully, he identifies some gospel variants (such as “the therapeutic gospel”) and describes how each of them would answer those questions. He also suggests how those questions should be answered. You might want to see if you agree.
Besides preparing to listen to sermons, those questions could be useful in other contexts. For example, in a mentoring/disciple-making context, might the disciple be encouraged to think them through and come back with his/her answers including the scriptures that have informed those answers?
There are so many different understandings about the gospel it is crucial that we equip people with a biblical view. Our understanding of the gospel will influence every area of our lives. For example, are we still afraid that we might not have done enough to satisfy God? If we have been saved, does it matter if we sin? What is the place of works in our salvation?
Some resources that might help in this reflection can be found on the Followers website.
Dave Zuleger (Desiring God) has listed 12 scriptural promises linked to the scriptures. God promises many benefits to those who read and obey His word. (Here is the 1-page version.)
At the beginning of a new year, this might help inspire you to be faithful in Bible reading and reflection.
Have a look at the Church of England’s campaign to encourage prayer. The webpage includes the advertisement that was (if I remember rightly) banned in British cinemas.
What might happen in our churches and communities if there was a revival f prayer amongst Christians. Maybe it could start with us. Are you willing to make a new commitment to prayer?