– by Greg Stier
I love the church. She is Christ’s bride and the key to cultural transformation. In that sense, every church is great. But let’s be honest, there are a ton of churches that leave much to be desired when it comes to truly making a difference in their congregations and communities. So when you plug into a church that is getting it done, it’s a true blessing.
Of course, there are no perfect churches, but there are many that are pressing toward the high water mark we see in Scripture. Here are 10 signs you may be going to a great local church.
- It is lead by a team of godly leaders, not a Lone Ranger pastor who gathers Tonto-type leaders around him to say “Yes, Kemo Sabe”to his each and every idea (Titus 1:5-9).
- The Gospel is central to every sermon, program and meeting (1 Corinthians 15:3,4), and the advancement of it both locally and globally drive strategic initiatives (Acts 1:8).
- People are using their spiritual gifts, not just watching the “stage team” exercise theirs (1 Corinthians 12:12-31), resulting in disciples being made and multiplied (2 Timothy 2:2).
- It, like the early church, is integrated, fully representing the demographic of the community in which it resides (Ephesians 2:11-21).
- Love, demonstrating itself in friendliness, generosity, internal/external care programs and community involvement dominates the atmosphere (1 Corinthians 13:1-8).
- Most likely there is a thriving small group program where members truly can have great biblical conversations, share struggles and pray with/for each other (James 5:16).
- The people are being inspired and equipped to share their faith relationally, resulting in more and more new believers being added to the church (Acts 2:47).
- The teaching/preaching is biblical, theological and immensely practical (2 Timothy 3:16-17; 4:1-4).
- Ministry to children and teenagers are top priorities, not afterthoughts (Titus 2:1-8; Deuteronomy 6:4-9).
- Intercessory prayer fuels everything. It’s the engine, not the caboose, of how the church rolls from top to bottom (1 Timothy 2:1-8).