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Revitalization

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Jul 17, 2018
Renewal

Renewing Your Church: Growing Together to Discover Our God-Given Purpose

I asked if they were ready to see God do something new. When they affirmed that they were, I told them that we would be changing absolutely everything.
Renewing Your Church: Growing Together to Discover Our God-Given Purpose
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November 2014 marked the month of my 32nd birthday and my first week as Lead Pastor of what was then known as Thornville Community Nazarene, in Thornville, OH. I would take the position as bi-vocational, being on a plane three days a week for my corporate job, with the hopes ...

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Jul 13, 2018
Revitalization

Five Key Things About Church Revitalization That Most Leaders Miss, Part 2

We need to patiently endure as leaders. Don’t give up.
Five Key Things About Church Revitalization That Most Leaders Miss, Part 2
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Third, most revitalization does not actually work at first.

Another thing about church revitalization most leaders miss is that most revitalization does not actually work at first.

Church revitalization is often a process of two steps forward, one step back. Sometimes, it’s ...

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Jul 12, 2018
Revitalization

Five Key Things About Church Revitalization That Most Leaders Miss, Part 1

If you went into ministry for everyone to like you, this was a poor decision.
Five Key Things About Church Revitalization That Most Leaders Miss, Part 1
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Many churches are stuck and stagnant. That doesn’t mean God isn’t working in and through them, but it can be frustrating for a church to be stuck in the same place for a long time. Sometimes it can feel like no matter what the leadership or the church community does, ...

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Jul 3, 2018
Revitalization

Renewing Your Church: Church Revitalization as a Humbling Experience

God works through people and churches who depend on him.
Renewing Your Church: Church Revitalization as a Humbling Experience
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I accepted my first pastorate in 2004 at First Baptist Church in Castroville, TX as a 25-year-old recent seminary graduate. I had not given much thought to leading revitalization throughout my studies, but I found myself leading a church that was still in the process of healing ...

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Jun 29, 2018
Revitalization

Renewing Your Church: Removing Barriers for New Life

We need to remove the personal and corporate barriers that keep God from moving freely in and through us.
Renewing Your Church: Removing Barriers for New Life
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We live in an ever-changing world in which the church seems to be struggling to keep up. Our churches are aging and losing their relevance in our post-Christian, postmodern, and pluralistic world. Our children grow up and leave our churches. Churches are moving away from the ...

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Jun 13, 2018
Revitalization

The Five R’s of Church Revitalization, Part 2

Revitalization is possible because we serve a God who specializes in resurrections.
The Five R’s of Church Revitalization, Part 2
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In yesterday’s post, I talked about Reframing on Grace and Realigning on Mission as steps to revitalize a church in a gospel-centered way.

The word revitalize comes from a Latin word that we probably know: vitalis. We think of vital organs as those that are necessary for ...

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Jun 12, 2018
Revitalization

The Five R’s of Gospel-Centered Church Revitalization, Part 1

We must never take our eyes off the need for church revitalization.
The Five R’s of Gospel-Centered Church Revitalization, Part 1
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What does it mean to revitalize a church in a way that that is gospel centered? Let me share the five R’s of revitalization: reframing grace, realigning mission, recasting vision, remembering the journey, and renewing all things. Today, we will look at the first two.

First, ...

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Jun 2, 2018
Rural America

Reaching and Revitalizing Rural America: Overcoming Misconceptions, and Answering the Call (Part 3)

Christians belong in the space of need and desperation because we carry a message of hope that is vitally needed in those contexts.
Reaching and Revitalizing Rural America: Overcoming Misconceptions, and Answering the Call (Part 3)
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Multiple voices have articulated a burden for this area, and they are no longer distant and inaudible. Many of these leaders grew up in rural areas and have answered God’s call to return and minister there.

In his book, Transforming Church in Rural America: Breaking All ...

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May 30, 2018
Rural America

Reaching and Revitalizing Rural America: Overcoming Misconceptions, and Answering the Call (Part 2)

In reality, rural America is in a perilous position — perhaps in greater danger of decay and decline than many cities.
Reaching and Revitalizing Rural America: Overcoming Misconceptions, and Answering the Call (Part 2)
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Misconception #2: Idyllic Life

The second misconception is that rural America is doing fine, while the inner cities alone are in decline. Though the general population of rural communities is diverse, there are challenges that are increasingly pervasive and common among many ...

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May 28, 2018
Rural America

Reaching and Revitalizing Rural America: Overcoming Misconceptions, and Answering the Call (Part 1)

To paint any people with a broad brush is not to see them for who they truly are.
Reaching and Revitalizing Rural America: Overcoming Misconceptions, and Answering the Call (Part 1)
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We live in a world of paradoxes.

As in Charles Dickens’ A Tale of Two Cities, it is the best of times and somehow also the worst of times. It appears to be the age of information and knowledge, yet proves to be an age of foolishness. It is an era of belief and a time of ...

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May 16, 2018
Stagnation

Why Is Our Church Stagnating, and What Do We Do?

Making sure your church is a loving, welcoming environment that genuinely seeks to share the gospel is a great way to address stagnation and to actively pursue growth.
Why Is Our Church Stagnating, and What Do We Do?
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When we hear the term “stagnating,” it likely elicits a response from us of something unhealthy and functioning poorly. Although it is sometimes the case that something stagnates for bad reasons, it is also true that stagnation is not necessarily a bad thing, depending ...

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Apr 25, 2018
Small Churches

Five Decisions that Helped Turn Around My Small Town Church

I believe your small town church can grow; I believe this because I’m living it.
Five Decisions that Helped Turn Around My Small Town Church
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The small town church where I serve as Executive Pastor will turn 12 years old this year. In those 12 years we’ve experienced incredible growth in many different areas. We’ve seen hundreds of people experience salvation and take their next step through baptism. We’ve ...

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Mar 24, 2018
Small Churches

20 Truths from Small Church Essentials

Just because a church is small, doesn’t mean it’s broken.
20 Truths from Small Church Essentials
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Karl Vaters’ new book Small Church Essentials: Field-Tested Principles for Leading a Healthy Congregation of Under 250 has just released and it’s a great read for pastors and leaders of smaller churches. Karl has been a small church pastor for 30 years, is the author ...

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Mar 20, 2018
Rebuilding

One-on-One with Tom Holladay on “Putting It All Together Again When It’s All Fallen Apart”

Nehemiah mourned, fasted, and prayed; that's where you start.
One-on-One with Tom Holladay on “Putting It All Together Again When It’s All Fallen Apart”
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Ed: Tell us what led you to write your new book.

Tom: This book grows out of one of my life messages. For me, a life message is something I’ve been learning for decades, and is usually something learned out of pain. Thirty years ago, my wife Chaundel and I suffered a devastating ...

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Mar 15, 2018
Church Growth

Five Things that Keep Churches from Change

Being a representative of Christ in a lost world requires change.
Five Things that Keep Churches from Change
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Leading a church into revitalization is a daunting task. It takes much prayer, grace, and strength. Churches that need revitalization have often drifted into a place of complacency. The change they need often comes about because of a cathartic moment.

Desperation is quite the ...

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