When I look at my generation and see not only the decline of the most foundational morals, but the increase of spiritual orphans wandering aimlessly through the world, it breaks my heart.
2. The unchurched are becoming less responsive to churches’ efforts to connect with them. The churchless interviewed were most open to “a friend of yours inviting you to attend a local church,” with one-fifth expressing strong interest and nearly half willing to consider a church based on this factor.
Here’s the truth: The image of church in itself has been given a negative brand to non-believing peers, a brand that’s judgmental, closed-minded and possibly hateful. While none of that is at all the heart of the gospel we teach, the simple fact is that there has just been no closely related examples to think otherwise. But as a friend or co-worker, you are that example.
Chances are they will hear and be more embracing to you, a person they trust in, versus a pastor or church leader they really don’t know. But they know you. They know your character, and most of all, they’ve seen the significantly good changes that faith has played in your life. Because there is a relationship there and deposits that have been made in one another’s lives enough to build a place of trust, it’s more likely that they would set foot into a church via your personal invitation—even suggest going to grab coffee, riding there together or something beforehand. It should be much more of a bonding experience and sharing why your life has gotten to the place it is today. No one wants to feel like they’re pressured to be converted.
3. A recent survey found that only 14 percent of self-identified Christians are Christlike in attitude and action. More than one-third of America’s adults are essentially secular in belief and practice. If nothing else, this helps explain why America has experienced a surge in unchurched people—and presages a continuing rise in this population.
This is no surprise to us. In fact, it’s what Craig Groeschel would call a Christian-Atheist. We have a country full of self-proclaiming Christians who live as if they don’t know Him at all. In fact, their life is blatantly secular. Surveys show that this plays a significant role in a rise of unchurched people. They simply don’t see a need for it!
If the gospel is not of significance to us, why should it be to others? If it’s not showing the fruit of the answers to life, the eternal hope for the soul or the change for the good of humanity, then it simply translates as something that has nothing to offer.
The saying stands: We may be the only Bible they read. If you’re a self-proclaiming Christian, but live an opposing life, believe it or not, you are a part of the problem. Spreading the gospel to this Earth always begins with our actions. What is our generation reading when they see you? Does your living translation of the gospel have anything to offer?
In the book of Acts, new believers were brought to the church by the hundreds. In chapter 2, it tells us that there were numbers of those who were added each day. They were so full of the love and grace of Christ that it overflowed into a loving grace for others. They met each other’s needs practically, financially and spiritually, and acted in the fruits of the Spirit, which soon became contagious to those around them, because they saw the solution to a life of emptiness and were soon introduced to the life-changing salvation of the gospel.
Changing the world always begins with changing the life of one. And you play a role in the history of God’s eternal plan for all of humanity right where you are, simply by being a living example and a witness to those you come into contact with. Continue to press on knowing you are making a difference just by letting your light shine boldly in an increasingly dark world.
How can you make an every-day example for Christ with those around you?