Healthy Church Ministry
Have you spent time in a hospital? If so, you will remember that it is difficult to get any sleep at night as the nurse or nurse’s assistant keeps coming into your room and waking you up with that nasty bright light over your bed and says, “it is time to get your vital signs.” You think or say, “ugh, again” and wait for them to get the necessary readings so that you can go back to sleep. Even worse, you are awakened by the clammy, cold-handed phlebotomist saying, “it is time to draw more blood.” But, at least you know you are still alive and hopefully getting better. Often, we learn that one can get better rest at home rather than in a hospital. Taking “vital signs” may not be much fun, but it is necessary! It is a measurement of health and if the vital signs are weak, then we can be in big trouble. Checking vital signs in our home or in the workplace is also necessary. But what about the church? A lot of churches are in real trouble but do not realize it, as they are comfortable and in some ways perhaps members are so satisfied with the way things are, that they do not realize that they are slowly, but surely dying. One of the statements in our current sermon series really shocked me. Tommy reminded us that all seven churches addressed in the book of Revelation no longer exist! Each one has died and they are all churches given specific attention in God’s Word! When I travel, I often pick out a church that meets in a large, beautiful building in a downtown area. Those buildings sometimes seat 1,500 or more people, but there may be only 150 to 300 people in attendance. Sometimes, it is due to people moving to the suburbs. Sometimes, it is due to the focusing on a social gospel and not preaching the Word. But, often, the congregation has waned because of not realizing and addressing the needs of those attending and as people have died, the membership continues to decline. They are only alive because of endowment funds. I think about that as I lead ministry in our church. Each ministry needs to have its vital signs checked frequently. I pray that we can all look at Tates Creek Christian Church and know that many years from now, we will still be a strong, vital congregation in the greater Lexington area.
~ Don firstname.lastname@example.org