“When Christ is squeezed from the Body of Christ by our own priorities and agenda as a congregation or through our busyness as leaders or disciples, what is left is little more than a corpse masquerading as a church.”
A focus on numbers may tempt us to simply rearrange the deck chairs on a sinking ship rather than seeking to reach people who have not heard or had the opportunity to respond to the Gospel.
Scripture doesn’t describe causal prayer anywhere, but always about prayer that is a person emptying his or her heart to God of whatever emotions are there.
The Holy Spirit is always at work in the world and in the church regardless of the problems that we face and regardless of the darkness that seems to prevail.
I wonder, too. Who among us is ready to take God at his word? Who is ready to spend time in repentance, time in surrender, time in confession of faith? Who is willing to be inconvenienced for the sake of the gospel of Jesus Christ, to be moved to their knees? Who is ready to cry out, not just for ourselves, but for the effectiveness of the Church, for the effectiveness of the gospel flowing through us, for the gospel’s power to renew the world?
Are you creating new room in your life for the Holy Spirit? Has your life created spiritual clutter? Do you need to sort and toss, mop and box up, or even just shove aside a pile of detritus to make just enough room to lie flat in prayer? Claim some space, now today: it doesn’t have to be much. Just enough time, or attention, or space to pray, “Come on, Holy Spirit…Come on…”
As much now as ever, there is an urgent need for the clarion call of biblically sound, prophetic preaching.
Physically setting apart time in a dedicated space grabs your whole body’s attention: it breaks up your habits, your routine. You physically go somewhere specifically for the purpose of attending to your soul.
Methodists gathered together because they were convinced that growth in holiness was most likely to happen in community.
I believe that Wesley can help us steer clear of the problem of moralistic therapeutic deism, as well as other barriers to renewal, so we stay on track in providing solid biblical teaching and preaching. He can do this with his robust vision of the Christian life, at once grace-filled and rigorous, communal and personal, leading to the goal of Christian perfection in God’s holy love. That vision is one of the treasures of our theological heritage, which is a heritage that has the power to help renew the church today.