Business in the church.

“One of the strongest institutions in the world is the Church. Jesus said, “On this rock I will build my church” (Matthew 16.18a). Notice Jesus said hewould build it and that it was his Church. Jesus built his Church using a sound business training program that applies today. He began by gathering and training twelve who caught his vision (the twelve apostles). Of those twelve, he identified three to mentor as future leaders (Peter, James, and John — all of whom led the church during the years following Jesus’ departure). And of those three, Jesus spent extra time with one, Peter, whom he trained to become the visionary leader of the church (a process called fractaling). By discipling the twelve, mentoring the three, and fractaling the one, Jesus was able to instill his mission and values into the early Church. And today we find over 1.5 billion adherents to Christianity in one form or another. It took some pretty savvy business sense to pull it off.” 

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I’m stumped by an idea. As Zac and I work on a new home-based-business idea, I ponder what purpose business and organization land in the church. There is a certain lack of professionalism in the business world that would be better off taken hold of by today’s churches. For our small business, we’ve begun by realizing that we share a talent that could benefit the world, a type of spiritual gift perhaps. We have since then determined our “mission statement” and “target clientele” through winnowing down and specifying the base model of the business. We then take and produce.

I’m noticing that there is a gap missing in between specifying and producing that a lot of businesses and most churches miss. There is, for lack of a better term, advertising. Or maybe rather, making your product attractive to it’s viewers. Who wants to buy a gourmet meal (no matter how beautiful and laid out it may be) if it’s given to them lazily on a trash can lid.

Dare I say this, but I’m beginning to realize that we have a responsibility, not to bend the truth and make Christianity appear better than it is, but rather we have a responsibility to present the gospel in a true, attractive, and effective way to the world around us. Because it is true, attractive, and effective.

I struggle with this concept because Jesus never sugar coated anything. He told people the truth flat-out and let them take what they wanted from it. He pulled out the very heart of someone because He knew their very heart. We don’t have that luxury.

I struggle with this concept because other leaders in the bible have said such things as when Paul states, To the JewI became like a Jewto win the Jews. To those under the law I became like one under the law (though I myself am not under the law), so as to win those under the law.” (1 Corinthians 9.20) Though he didn’t conform himself or change his own convictions, he selflessly melded himself into their culture and used his “in’s” to reveal God’s truths to them.

Now I’m not talking about bending the truth whatsoever in sermons or curriculum or anything of that sort. I believe the bible is truth itself and cannot be changed by any man. The truth of the bible does not have to be altered to fit our generation, but rather I think that our generation and the generations before must continually alter itself to fit the bible.

What I’m trying to say is that the church needs to be visually and emotionally appealing to it’s guests. People need to feel welcomed and encouraged and built up when they are surrounded by the body of Christ. People need to feel encouraged to serve and give of themselves in a safe and holy place. People need to be brought into the fold and loved and cherished and truly accepted. There is nothing more attractive to me than that. How about you? A group of people ready to meet you, willing to open their hearts and their homes, and people willing to encourage and challenge you to do the same. There needs to be a certain amount of professionalism and organization that seems taboo to churches these days.
We must find a way to release the stiff, stagnant church and selflessly keep up with our culture while bringing in the same biblical truths that have always been there: compassion, love, forgiveness, conviction, repentance, and so on. We must make the body of Christ a place of refuge for the weary and hope for the brokenhearted. We must stop seeing only a person’s sins and finally let ourselves see the sinner, who really just needs a Savior, just like we do.

If you’re a Christian, I would ask that you join me in prayer for the body of Christ, around the world and in your worlds. In these trying and unsure times, something must remain solid. That solidity will be found in God’s word. Are you on board?


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