A Church that only God can build

If you haven’t thought it already, we’ll just go ahead and say it. The vision is painfully vague. This is intentional. While we certainly have some ideas about what God's church will look like, and how it will function, we never want those dreams to take control of us. The moment they do is the moment that God no longer has control. Instead, we want to remind ourselves always that apart from Jesus, we can do nothing. (John 15:5) And every time we read this vision statement, it’s a reminder to do one thing: rely on God.

It doesn’t take but one look at the New Testament to see a stark contrast between God’s design for the Church and what most have experienced in the Western Church today. Never mind the structural differences (like whether we meet in homes or other buildings); the most notable difference is how much we lack in terms of both power and love. Yet no matter how hard we work to turn the tide, even the most “successful” churches aren’t really changing anything about the big picture, but instead, only perpetuating this lackluster version of Christianity on a larger scale. Altogether, our collective effort is showing a negative return, and it’s clear that this is our own doing, not God’s. (Heads up, if you don’t agree with this assessment so far, then you probably won’t agree with much of what we have to say.)
So what needs to change? What’s the silver bullet that will finally turn things around within the American Church? Is it better teaching or theology? Better sermons or better music? Better marketing strategies or social media platforms? Better buildings, hospitality, programs, or outreach? More inspiration, more conferences, more training, or more effort? Do we just need to plant more churches?

The obvious answer is no, or else we would have seen a change by now. Yet many continue to operate as if these kinds of things will make the difference. We make bigger budgets, build new buildings, hire more employees, start more programs, read more books, learn new strategies, and work longer hours. And while none of these things are inherently wrong, our delusional reliance on them is definitely wrong! What we’re doing isn’t working, and there’s only one thing that will. We must learn to rely on the power of God and let him build his Church his way.

Please notice, we don’t believe that meeting in homes is the primary solution! Relying on God and the power of his Holy Spirit is the solution; we simply believe that the house church model is the most conducive structure for this. (You can read more about that here.) And when we can learn to do this, only then will we see a Church that only God can build.

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