Sample Religious Essay on Five Deficiencies That Stifle Church Growth

Lesson Manuscript

The church is an important place as it helps people to establish a relationship with God. God is the giver of everything including life hence forming a positive and close relationship with him is important. However, like other social institutions, the church faces numerous challenges that interfere with its development. At some point in the journey of a church, there is the possibility of hitting a wall. In one’s efforts to grow a church, challenges such as persecution, degradation, depression, and others are likely to be encountered. In the establishment of a church, one is likely to go through tribulations and trials that make one think that God is not on their side. In such a situation, giving up or giving is not an option. Such a situation presents an opportunity for one to turn to God and trust Him for the best outcomes. It is also important for one to understand that God has a plan for everyone and everything, and this understanding could be of help in such as time of need. In addition to turning to God, one must consider key lessons that are important to the development of the church.

One of the key lessons important to the development of one’s church is knowing where the church is going. Knowing where the church is going requires or entails having a defined vision and mission statement (Patricia, 2016). Such a statement is important as it helps in setting direction for the church and developing a plan that maps out the steps needed to achieve the laid-out vision and mission. Second, creating an inviting atmosphere is important in the development of a church. Today’s society is consumer-driven and people, including worshippers, are attracted naturally to an environment that is appealing from an aesthetic perspective (Patricia, 2016). Many worshippers tend to be proud of where they worship underlining how important it is to provide a clean, comfortable, orderly, and generally appealing environment. To this effect, having clean glass surfaces, clean floors, and spacious halls help in the creation of an appealing environment for members. Third, caring for one another within the church is important in the development and growth of the church. That church members are the key customer groups within the church cannot be refuted. Thus, it is important to understand every church member’s unique needs while doing everything possible to ensure that the needs are met. However, efforts to meet every church member’s vision must be in line with the church’s vision. For instance, with volunteer opportunities in the church, both the application and communication process must be transparent and open for every member to feel they are cared for. In the event a member of the church is given a responsibility, caring for them means that they are made aware of what is expected of them and what they require to execute the responsibility (Patricia, 2016). The bottom line is that providing support for the needs of church members goes a long way in making them feel care for and appreciated. Fourth, providing opportunities to serve is also critical in the development and growth of the church. Every person’s desire is to serve others at some point in time. A good lesson in this regard is how Jesus was committed to serving others irrespective of their class or status in the community. As Christians, we also need opportunities to help or serve other people. Opportunities to serve allows church members to use their gifts as far as helping God’s people is concerned. Fifth, more action than talk is also integral to the growth and development of the church. A common and widespread practice by church leaders is debating issues. However, for them to be more effective, they need to act rather than debate issues. If church leaders act on even a few of the ideas or issues they debate, they could be more effective in their mission to spread the word and message of God.

A deficit within the church that can be remedied by committing new and afresh the above-mentioned missional principles is principles is pessimism. Pessimism is whereby church members and church leaders express negative moods that frustrate the growth and development of the church. It entails thinking or saying destructive things about oneself and other members of the church. This deficit has caused the downfall of many churches, but it can be remedied by first committing to knowing where the church is going. With such knowledge, every church member will focus on things that bring the church together while maintaining a positive attitude. Pessimism can also be remedied by committing to the creation of an inviting atmosphere. With a comfortable and attractive environment, church members are not likely to say or engage in talks that destroy the church. Other principles such as caring for one another within the church, providing opportunities to serve, and more action than talk will also avert negativity among members while paving the way for hope, resilience, and motivation with regard to developing the church.

There are several ways in which one can positively engage afresh in “God’s mission.” First, positive engagement in “God’s mission” requires one to demonstrate and exercise independence (Brown, 2016). Independence is about being self-directed and self-controlled in one’s actions and thinking. Church leaders must be self-reliant in how they plan and make important decisions in line with “God’s mission.” Second, positively engaging afresh in “God’s mission” requires one to be flexible. Flexibility is a skill that allows one’s adaptation and adjustment to their own thoughts and feelings when in new situations. A flexible person can adapt easily to circumstances that are dynamic, unfamiliar, and unpredictable as commonly encountered within the church (Brown, 2016). Third, being emotionally self-aware is important for any person interested in positively engaging afresh in “God’s mission.” Emotional self-awareness refers to how one is capable of recognizing his or her feelings, differentiating the feelings, and recognizing their impact on others. For pastors committed to ensuring the development or growth of their churches, emotional self-awareness is considered the most important skill (Brown, 2016). A pastor who may not recognize that he or she is angry or frustrated with worshipers will not be able to positively engage afresh in “God’s mission.”

Preparing this lesson has had an impact on me as an individual. First, it has made me aware of the skills that I must possess if I am to positively engage in “God’s mission.” I have come to understand how emotional self-awareness is important particularly in recognizing my relationship or interactions with worshippers. Second, preparing the lesson has made me understand important aspects that lead to the development and growth of the church. The most outstanding aspect for me is caring for one another within the church, which is one of the greatest challenges hindering the growth of many churches. Writing the lesson also strengthened my belief in God and his son Jesus Christ who was always committed to serving others as highlighted in the scriptures.

Bibliography

Brown, Bud. “Five Deficiencies That Stifle Church Growth.” XPastor®, October 12, 2016. https://www.xpastor.org/strategy/leadership/5-deficiencies-that-stifle-church-growth/

Patricia. “7 Keys to Church Growth.” Smart Church Management, December 21, 2016. https://smartchurchmanagement.com/keys-to-church-growth/