The Link Between Church Attendance and Youth Retention


Five Ways to Cultivate a Culture of Discipleship

American churches are in crisis.

Nearly four thousand churches close every year in North America. Ed Stetzer estimates that 70% to 80% of all evangelical churches in the US have either stopped growing or are in decline! We are in a crisis of discipleship.

I believe with all my heart; a return to biblical disciple making will reenact the 21st century reformation. If disciple making is our focus then it ought to be one of our highest priories in every leadership pipeline of the church.

By empowering the people of God of any color, any race, any background, any creed, any socio-economic status, with the Spirit of God by be wielding the Word of God for the ministry of God and for the glory of God will change the world.

Here are five practical reason why we must cultivate a culture of discipleship.

Quit Feeding Them Milk!

If You Want People to Grow Spiritually, Quit Telling Them to Study the Bible

Making Disciples

Matthew 28:19 Therefore go and make disciples of all nations

The Great Commission is the marching orders of the church. Everything we do as a church should be measured against these words. We should do nothing that doesn’t help us evangelize – sharing the gospel message with others.

It saddens me when I look at the journal for our conference (and I imagine it is the same throughout the U.S.) and see the number of churches without even one profession of faith. That would be adding a new disciple to the kingdom. Some say they are concentrating on maturing their current disciples – yet – if disciples are maturing – they should be attracting new disciples as well.

Let me ask a few questions today. Who do we know that is being drawn to Jesus because of our walk with Him? Is there someone we are witnessing to that has been drawn to Christ in this past year? Is there someone we have helped to grow closer to Jesus in this past year? Who have we invited to worship with us in the past year? Who have we talked to about our faith walk in the past year? Do we even talk to others about Jesus and what He means to us?

If even one of those questions (or many) give us a hard time – we should be convicted to let our light so shine before others that they see Jesus. As disciples we are called to go and make disciples of all people – this is not just for pastors or missionaries – it is the call for every Christian.

Here’s today’s passage in partial context. Matthew 28:16-20 – 16 Then the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain where Jesus had told them to go. 17 When they saw him, they worshiped him; but some doubted. 18 Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. 19 Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”

In a few moments the Evangelism team at our local church will meet and I will ask them these same questions. I hope they are excited to talk about how God is using them to draw others to Jesus. How did you answer these questions? Were you excited to see where God was using you?

Just something for us to think about today as we go on our way.

Why Your Church Members Don’t Pray Much

Yesterday was the National Day of Prayer in the United States. My evidence is anecdotal, but it seems to me that most church members don’t pray much, despite efforts like the Day of Prayer. In general, they talk about prayer much more than they actually pray. Here’s why that happens:

  1. Some are not genuine believers. Jesus Himself had one fake among His group, and we’re not likely to do better. We shouldn’t be surprised when non-believers among us don’t really know how to pray.
  2. No one has ever taught them to pray. We’ve told them to pray, but we’ve not taught them how to pray. Consequently, they don’t pray—and they often feel guilty because they don’t–and can’t–do what we’ve told them to do.

Read the rest:

When Will We Move Beyond the Basics? The Dumbing Down of the Church