We grow when we identify and work on our weaknesses. Last week we reflected on our strengths as a church. Today I want to identify areas of weakness. At our Town Hall at 12:45 p.m. this coming Sunday, we will build on this discussion to consider where we have come from and where we are going.
First we can grow in the area of discipleship. As a church, we want to make disciples and “present everyone mature in Christ” (Col 1:28). Currently we have a buffet of opportunities to engage in spiritual growth and discipleship at our church, but we have not laid out a clear process and pathway for growth. We want to grow deeper as well as broader, walking through the time-consuming and messy processes of making disciples who make disciples. Our goal is not simply to get people to come to church, but we want to see Christ formed in people.
Second, we want to increase our ability to connect people into the church family. As the church grows and changes, a lack of ownership and spectator mentality can easily set in. People can assume that others will serve and others will care as we consume our spiritual product. However, the church is not simply a purveyor of spiritual goods; it is a family. Worship is not for our consumption but an expression of our sacrifice. People who have been with the church a long time struggle to know here they fit in the changing reality of our church. Newcomers sometimes wonder how to get involved. We need to create on-ramps for newcomers to get engaged with community and pathways for people to flourish in our family.
Third, we want to grow in missions and evangelism. We build on a rich legacy of engaging in missions around the world and across the street. We have over sixty missionaries around the country and the world, and we are engaged in strategic kingdom initiatives near and far. Many of our people serve as a thousand points of light throughout the community and in the world. We have an opportunity to develop and spotlight a few points of ministry as a training ground so that more people might engage more strategically in their witness of Christ.
Fourth we want to steward our spiritual and financial gifts well. We want to mobilize people in our body to use their gifts to serve both within and without the church. We also want to engage God’s work through this church through financial giving. Growth in financial giving usually lags behind attendance growth as people catch the vision of what God is doing, and as people engage in God’s work together, ownership grows.
Honestly, it is easy to feel overwhelmed when we see our own weaknesses. Yet seeing our weaknesses clearly presents an opportunity to grow and develop in fresh and new ways. We are Wellspring, and God has begun a good work in us. Let us continue to step in with faith and courage to see that work be brought to completion!