Presentation on theme: "Our Lord loves to see each one of us grow consistently - spiritually. But this only happens where there’s constant personal reflection. All of us who accepted."— Presentation transcript:
Our Lord loves to see each one of us grow consistently - spiritually. But this only happens where there’s constant personal reflection. All of us who accepted the gospel of Jesus collectively constitute the church. The Lord desires to see His church grow irrespective of the hardships encountered - Romans 8:11-13 REVITALIZATION is the first pillar. This is inseparable from christian living and church growth because we so often get spiritually weakened. It’s our duty to seek God’s help for re-energisation through e.g. prayer, e.t.c The need for revitalization has never been greater than it is today. This is sad to say but it is a fact which must be said – we get spiritually weak or keep failing in many ways thus the need for continued revitalization.
The need for spiritual health must, inevitably, lead us eventually to consider the seven pillars that are necessary for true christian living. Once we identify this need, each of us will not be working at all of the seven pillars at the same time but each of us will eventually find him/herself working at each of the pillars one time or another. Please keep in mind, as we proceed, that CHURCH means US - 1Timothy 3:14-15 Outline of the Seven Pillars for spiritual health.
We are in need of REVITALIZATION if: there is a decline in spiritual activeness after an initial phase of spiritual vigor; the church experiences the beginning of a high turn-over of lay leaders; there becomes a shorter duration of stay of the fully assimilated people in the work; the church morale and momentum level drops; the church coasts for a brief time and then drops again, only to see the cycle of decline repeated again and again. The result is - believers hit an all time low! Some people completely backslide/churches get stunted. We should pray that we never get in this situation - Jude 1:20 -23.
Have you ever seen a church or a believer that once was alive and vibrant but begin to lose focus and drive for the cause of Christ? That is when the need to work on revitalisation should start! We must always stay alert to the need for revitalization because if this be the case, RE-VISIONING – the second pillar - comes into play. This helps to generate new spiritual ideas to accomplish goals that lead towards maintaining a healthy relationship with Christ! At this pillar members must cultivate a sense of personal christian purpose and direct it to discovering a shared vision for the church. Understanding the critical milestones necessary for a new vision will help us foster christian practices that might have been lost.
RE-FOCUSING is the third pillar. This can as well work where things are going right but still there is need to set new challenges, to look for new opportunities or expand gospel witness into a target area. Questions such as what is our biblical purpose and why do we exist as Christians must be addressed. Looking at how God led us in the past is a good way to get ourselves unstuck by addressing where we’ve been, how God has worked for us and what He has for our future. Identifying our vision as individuals and as a church in general in relation to God’s purpose is the beginning of getting re-focused for spiritual vitality that help maintain true Spiritual activeness – 1John 2:1-6.
RENEWAL is the fourth pillar of the seven pillars for spiritual health. This pillar requires to get back to that which was working and walk as God’s children. Where this happens to be a need, a careful renewal strategy has to be planned and carried out. e.g. renewal of a congregation is much harder than the revitalisation, re-visioning and re-focusing process. It is clearly known that not every church member finds it easy to live or behave as they ought for a spiritually healthy church. It is important for each one of us to live and relate as God’s children who truly let His light shine and shine through us – 1Peter 1:22 – 2:1-3
This fifth pillar for spiritual health – RE-STARTING - deals with things which church leaders must look at when circumstances necessitate that a restoration process is called for – e.g. personal counseling, visitations, re-baptizing, special prayer arrangements. Of course the need to re-start is a result of previous failures amid challenges, which – luckily by God’s grace from the scriptures we have seen – we are passionately called to take to God in prayers.
The sixth pillar - RESTORATION - deals with tools and techniques necessary to assist the church when it is necessary to reinvent itself to a changing community. Diversity now abound. When a church experiences a sh ift in the community makeup, often there will be (to various degrees) the need to redevelop a new experience for those who make up the new context! New experiences must replace old experiences. New practices likewise will replace old practices – but in all cases without spiritual compromise. At this pillar we must always be alert if we experience the need for reinventing and take seriously that need - so that we make a clear commitment for a reinvented, reformed an d reinvigorated community that fits a new context.
The final pillar – RE-INVENTION - is the hardest and often only happens once those who have truly laboured for Christ for spiritual vitality to abound have tried everything else they could think of with no success! This is when affected members no longer have the courage to work through the various issues that led to very poor spiritual health; it can be identified as being on life support and in need of a total re-birth. This means that the church has been flat lined and is just holding on by means of its legacy and the faithful few members – what a sad situation to be! Re-invention is for a seriously spiritually unhealthy church or individual to once again begin growing as if they are completely new to the faith. Finally – Jude 1:24-25.
Maintaining spiritual healthy For a Healthy Church