“Be the change you wish to see in the world.”
Cliché/overused saying? Yep.
But a truthful and important reminder nevertheless? Yes.
Recently I’ve spoken with young people who are frustrated about the conditions of their churches. They love the people there, but the spiritual enthusiasm is lacking, the desire to reach the community seems gone. Weekly meetings remain boring, tired, and lackadaisical. Church feels like a time capsule from 50 years ago. My friends desperately want to infuse life into their congregations. But nothing seems to be working.
Maybe you can relate.
Maybe you’re discouraged about the way your church conducts itself or handles certain things. Maybe you’ve considered looking elsewhere for a church home, trying to find a place that’s more excited about the gospel and changing more lives in your city.
At my little church here in Texas, I can think of things I’d like to change. I know areas where we could definitely improve. Obviously, no church—mine and yours included—is perfect.
But I also know something else, something that makes me not want to jump ship and shop for another church:
One person can influence
an entire congregation.
You don’t have to be an elder or missionary or spiritual superstar to change a church’s culture. I think we know that intuitively, but isn’t it a cool thought? Just one or two motivated people can change the entire trajectory and culture of a church.
In fact, I’ve seen this firsthand.
A few years ago, a couple young people moved to my hometown. At first they hardly knew anybody here, but the effect they had on our little church was remarkable. Thanks to their tireless enthusiasm for the gospel and willingness to invite strangers to our meetings, they made a tangible, positive difference in the culture of our chapel. We now have a whole slew of young people coming to our Sunday meetings, Friday night Bible studies, and other get-togethers—and it’s due in large part to the Lord’s work through them.
My point is simple:
you can affect your church’s culture for good.
You can increase the spiritual enthusiasm of your church.
You can show people what it means to be excited about the gospel.
You can infuse life into your congregation.
It may feel like an impossible task, but rest assured, you can make a difference. Don’t lose hope, keep on following the Lord, and thank Him for victories (even little ones) along the way.
Thus says the LORD, who makes a way in the sea, a path in the mighty waters, who brings forth chariot and horse, army and warrior; they lie down, they cannot rise, they are extinguished, quenched like a wick: “Remember not the former things, nor consider the things of old. Behold, I am doing a new thing; now it springs forth, do you not perceive it?” | Isaiah 43:16-19
Keep up the good fight. Be tireless. Be driven. Be bold.
Be that change you wish to see.