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Jimmy Fowler shares why Redeemer Fellowship chooses to stay “small”:
Church growth is not evil or wicked. Church growth is good. And large churches aren’t inherently bad. Some larger churches are able to reach more people because their size. Some new to the faith feel more comfortable going to a larger church as they seek the Lord and what He has for them. Larger churches are able to provide more programs specific to where people are at or are dealing with. Larger churches have the finances and abilities to provide social assistance on a larger scale to their communities. They are also in a great position to plant more churches. Praise God for what He is doing in and through these churches!
But at Redeemer we value pastoral care and unified community which becomes difficult (if not impossible) for larger churches at multiple services.
Earlier today, Cecile Richards, president of Planned Parenthood Federation of America,gave sworn testimony before the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform.
Throughout her testimony Richards provided a number of misleading claims, inaccurate statements, and downright falsehoods. Here are five in particular you should know about.
I was a fairly new Christian in my mid-twenties. I was running very hard fueled by zeal and far less knowledge. To my credit I was talking to a lot of people about the gospel. To my shame I was developing a bit of a self-righteousness toward those who did not. I remember judging people and whole churches’ faithfulness based upon the appearance of outward zeal or emotion. Until one day I got rebuked without a word.
Changing practices or strategies is one thing, but driving those new practices into a new culture is quite another. And changes in practice do not last if they are not used to help create a new culture and are not grounded in that culture. John Kotter has written, “Changes can come undone, even after years of effort, because the new approaches haven’t been anchored firmly in group norms and values.” This challenging paradox points to the power of organizational culture. The culture cannot be changed easily, but it must be changed or a new philosophy and vision will be swallowed by the old culture.
So what are some practical things leaders can do to create a new culture?
Psalm 119 is one long and exuberant song of delight in God’s Word. Multiple descriptions of God’s Word are punctuated with repeated exultations of joy in God’s Word (Ps. 119:14, 16, 24, 35, 47, 70, 77, 92, 111, 143, 162, 174).
My favorite line is “I rejoice at your word, as one that finds great spoil” (v. 162). I love the imagery of someone who turns a corner one day only to find a huge pile of treasure left behind by a marauding army – and it’s all his. Can you imagine what that would feel like? That’s how we should feel when we open the Bible. So let me suggest a number of ways in which we can experience joy in God’s Word.