Friday, May 08, 2015

The Small Church

Future of Small Church in America. (This is a handout and discussion guide I used for discussing small churches and the health of the church)

The Elephant in the Room: Big Church versus Small Church. (Talk about Bob Russell's home church illustration from When God Builds a Church)

Resources Guide: Small Church America
Outreach Magazine July/ August 2014
“The Size of a Church does not determine its health. But a Church’ Health can determine its size.” Ed Stetzer “Do Small Churches Need Self-Assessment” “Proverbs 27:23 tells us, ‘Know well the condition of your flock and pay attention to your herds.’ Obviously the sheep-shepherd relationship regarding God’s people is used frequently throughout the Bible. So it isn’t a great leap to apply this to the church.
Pastors and leaders should know the state of their church regardless of its size. Being small is normal in the kingdom. Being unhealthy is not. So small church leaders need to determine the health of the local body.”
About 63 Million People or 20.4% of the population attend Church each Sunday – American Sociological Review
The Average Church attracts fewer than 90 adults on a typical weekend. 60% of protestant churches have a 100 or fewer adults on a typical weekend. Just 2% of churches attract more than 1,000 adults on a typical weekend. – Barna. Pg. 62
In the U.S. protestant and other Christian Churches. 9 Million weekly worshipers attend 177,000 churches of less than 100 people. That’s 59% of all the churches in the U.S. – National Congregational Study. Pg. 63
Expert Tips: Small Church Pastors Values:
1. Relationships are most important
2. The ministries of your church should reflect the gifting of your people.
3. Speak the language of your community well.
4. You must thrive as the leader. – Jeff Keady and Jonny Craig Dover Church

“The Median US Congregation has just 75 regular participants and an annual budget of $90 000 But the median attendee worships in a congregation with about 400 regular participants and an annual budget of $280 000” – National Congregational Study pg. 64
90% of Congregations have 350 or fewer people - National Congregational Study
Churches of 200 or less are four times more likely to plant a daughter church than churches of 1000 or more. The pattern continues – the smaller the size of the church the more fertile they are in planting churches. – Lifeway. Pg. 65
“The Church to population Ratio in the U.S. peaked at
One church for every 430 people in WW1. But today there is only one church for every 6, 194 people. In Canada the ratio is 1:115, 040. –North American Mission Board.” Pg. 71
Support for Churches of All sizes: what resources for health? Leaders, preachers etc.
Support for declining Churches: Knowing when to Close, Merge, or fight?
Attitude Adjustment: Rejoicing in all things,
Church Health is Key. The Goal is to advance the Kingdom.
Other Thoughts:

Wednesday, May 06, 2015

Why Goto ICOM 2015?

Why go to the International Conference on Missions in Richmond this Fall?

Here are some suggestions:

I. To learn more about missions of course.

II. To recognize that the Kingdom of God is bigger than any of us.

III. The Worship. There is nothing like it.

IV. The students' passion to learn.

V. To be encouraged to "Go ..." fulfill the Great Commission.

VI. Opportunity to Pray. Pray for other missions and organizations and Christians around the World.

VII. Opportunity to Give. Give of your time, talents and treasure to the Kingdom.

VIII. To meet and make new friends. There is nothing like knowing the Church is united and working together.

IX. The Encouragement. Examples and joy of others being Jesus' hands and feet.

X. Knowing you're not alone in ministry/ church work/ making disciples that making a difference. It helps in fulfilling the Great Commission with the Greatest commandment.

Won't you join me this year at ICOM 2015?

For more information goto or

See you there.

Friday, May 01, 2015

Why Church Camp Matters!!

In a few weeks camp season will start. So why Church Camp? Why does it matter at all?

I. Camp can be and is an extension of the church and its ministry. It is a vital mission and equipping of the leaders today and the future.

II. It is life changing. It helps kids have that "Light bulb" turn on and the transforming power of Christ. (Romans 12:1-2)

III. It is equipping. Teaches people to be the hands and feet of Jesus to others daily.

IV. Exposes students to other cultures and ministries. Nothing like those mission moments and the Call to "Go."

V. Supports other ministries. The Funds raised for camp to support other missions are the starting point for many young people to giving and what really matters.

VI. Gives a chance to hear God's Word in a different way. The Chapel talks, Vespers, classes etc. A week of Camp is like a year of Bible School wrapped up nicely to point others to well ...Jesus.

VII. Worship. Teaches students to worship. From the AM to PM to around the campfire .....
VIII. Fun.Fellowship and Family. From the silly games to messy games, swimming, the times together in teams building community and just knowing that this is just a glimpse into what the Family of God is suppose to be like.

IX. Food. Camp is nothing without the great food and snacks and canteen. Contests like how fast can you drink that soda .... and great cooks because they know it isn't just about the physical food but the spiritual that the students are getting as well.

X. Memories that will last a life time. Knowing the times when you finally got this "Jesus" thing. Praying. Telling your friends that you decided to put God first .... and then there were all those "Boy-Girl" relationships at camp. Who knew you could have a girlfriend for one day or the ole phrase "let's just be friends" can be said at camp. Camp brings back so many memories for me it was camps like OCA, Camp Selkirk, Elkhorn, Mahoning, Oak Hill, Park Springs, Tri-state etc.

What memories do you have of camp? Any others to add to why church camp matters?!
This year will be the first time I have deaned a week in 12 years. Prayers appreciated for our camp, new manager, and the future. This month our mission emphasis is Oak Hill and a special love offering will be taken to offset the cost of sending church member children to camp this year. Please give what you can above and beyond. Thanks.

See you Sunday,


Quote of the Day

“The church today is often guilty of supplying believers with the paper armor of good advice, programs, activities, techniques, and methods – when what they need is the godly armor of holy living. No program, method, or technique can bring wholeness and happiness to the believer who is unwilling to confront and forsake his sin.” – John MacArthur

Wednesday, April 08, 2015

Why the Cross? Why the Resurrection?

This past Sunday I had shared on the 7 last sayings of Jesus from the Cross and why the Cross was important. The death of Jesus was our atonement in which Christ died and took our place and basically was our perfect Sacrificial Lamb.

But we can't leave Jesus on the Cross ...much less leave Jesus as the babe at Christmas. the Resurrection is important and fundamental to our faith.

There are several skeptic objections to the Resurrection including:

1. Jesus a mythological figure. There are 39 ancient sources outside the NT that refer to Jesus.

Source: Rose Publishing Evidence for the Resurrection pamphlet 2004

2. Jesus was just a man. If just a man either liar or lunatic and not Lord. Evidence supports Jesus was who claimed to be with the fulfillment of prophecy. The probability of just 8 prophecies overwhelming.
Source: Peter Stoner Science speaks, Moody Press, 1969.

3. Jesus' followers made it up and were unreliable. In 1 Cor. 15:6 with over 500 people having seen the risen Jesus. Thus no hallucination nor deception. They were willing to die for their faith.

4. The Resurrection isn't important to Christianity. far from true. In 1 Corinthians 15 the Apostle Paul talks about if Christ had not risen - we'd be still in our sins. Because He has risen ...we have hope, and are no longer in our sins.

So with all the evidence, apologetics ....still people like to deny.

With resources like Evidences that Demand a Verdict. The Case for Christ. Apologetics and archaeology tend to confirm what we believe that Christ did indeed rise from the dead.

Interesting to note that the skeptics still have theories that have been debunked:

1.. Witnesses hallucinated. 2. Jesus not die 3. Jesus body stolen. Each of which been refuted.

And now currently is the latest in which some "Claim" to have found the tomb of Jesus. Being married, and relatives etc. (The old box of brother of James which several scholars have denied but recently brought up in the media again)

Thus people wanting to disclaim Jesus was who he said he was.

Wednesday, March 04, 2015

Church Shouldn't Suck the life out of you.

I had just read this book ...still taking it in.

Walking on Water.

There is a passage in Mark 6 that gives Jesus walking on water. I had recently given a short devotional thought this morning at Piedmont Christian School. (#yrs olds to High School)

Here are my thoughts:

I. We need to pray more. Pray like Jesus.

II. We don't need to be afraid. We don't need to be afraid of Jesus especially.

III. We do need to be astonished more. Our job is to point to well, Jesus.

Sometimes it is just a matter of knowing WHO is in control.

Friday, February 20, 2015

Mulan- I'll make a man out of you (with lyrics) (HD)

Teaching the Word. What books are you teaching?

Sunday Mornings I've been preaching through the book of Galatians.

Wednesday nights we just started Nehemiah. And my Thursday Morning Small Group we are looking at Ecclesiastes.

So what books of the Bible are you reading and teaching from?

Books I am Reading. Winter 2015

So with the cold weather there has been time to catch up on some books on my to read list.

I finished some of these books recently:

I. Be Real.

II. Deep and Wide by Andy Stanley (a book I am going to keep nearby and revisit its thoughts - good practical advice on reaching out to the unchurched)

III. Preachers I have Heard. (an older book from an author from the UK and first published in the 1940s some preachers include William Booth)

Upcoming to read:

I. Good Leaders Ask Great Questions. - Maxwell. (Follow up from an earlier seminar of the same title)

II. Growing in Christ. 40 days to a deeper faith. (Looking at it as a future resource)

III. The Relational Soul - Plass.

Also on my to read is a book called: Church shouldn't suck the life out of you.

So what are you reading?