"In the newly released directory [Churches of Christ in the United States], 21st Century Christian identifies 12,629 a cappella Churches of Christ with 1,578,281 adherents nationwide. Those figures represent 526 fewer churches and 78,436 fewer people in the pews than just six years ago" (Bobby Ross, "Church in America Marked by Decline," Christian Chronicle, February 2009).
We can survey, surf blogs, and guess at what has brought about the decline? We might discover what causes people to leave and churches to permanently close their doors. We might find 2,009 reasons. But what can be done to reverse the trend beginning this year?
Here's what I believe we must do turn things around. We must repent. Turn around to turn around.
Jesus entrusted us with good news to share, and we don't share it enough. We do not tell our friends about Jesus' death for their sins and how they, by grace through faith, can be saved. We talk about sharing it. We believe "the church" ought to share it. Yet, days pass, then weeks, and we cannot name one person to whom we have deliberately revealed "What Jesus has done" for us. Turn around to turn around.
Jesus said, "I tell you the truth, unless you repent, you too will perish."
Our silence about the good news has caused us to look like we have already perished. We've got to repent of our silence or we will die. Who will you tell about the goodness of Jesus this week? Turn around to turn around. That's Life at Work.