Over one billion people choose to worship Jesus in small churches.
But the astonishing power of small churches is not just about the numbers. It’s about strategic placement.
This is where our small size becomes our advantage.
Small churches have found their way into every corner of the world.
Laws don’t stop us, distance can’t limit us, and lack of funds won’t discourage us.
In places where Christianity is illegal, our size makes us invisible. Where people have no transportation, our size makes us accessible. Where land is expensive, our size makes us affordable.
Small churches are not a mistake to be fixed or an obstacle to overcome. We may be God’s greatest tool to reach the world. Especially when we join forces with our big- and megachurch brothers and sisters.
(This is the second in a five-part series. Click here to read Part 1, The Astonishing Power of Small Churches: Over One Billion Served.)
“Where’s Waldo?” Has Nothing on Small Churches
Small churches may exist in more places on earth than any other group of people.
Let’s start with religious groups. Most religions and Christian denominations exist predominantly within the region where they were birthed. But the body of Christ is everywhere. And no aspect of Christianity is found in more places than small churches.
Small churches are spread more evenly around the globe than Buddhists, Hindus, Jews or Muslims. More than Baptists, Methodists, Pentecostals or Catholics.
Small churches also exist in more places than any man-made product. We dot the world’s landscape more widely than Starbucks, McDonald’s, or even Coca-Cola. Yes, there are many places on earth where you can’t buy a Coke, but you can go to a small church – even if it’s illegal to do so.
Small churches reach into more segments of human society than communism, capitalism, democracy or Hollywood.
It’s been said that the world is flat, mainly because of the widespread use of computers. And to a large extent, that’s true. But Apple and Microsoft only wish they were in as many places as small churches.
The Adaptability of Small Churches
The Gospel of Jesus is more culturally adaptable than any ideology, religion or philosophy that has ever existed. (Truth tends to do that). And when it’s packaged in a small church, that adaptability becomes universal.
While our big- and megachurch friends are doing great things for God, they tend to be clumped in a handful of places around the globe. But small churches can be found on every continent, in every nation and among every ethnicity.
They are at home in every language and culture, among every age group, every socio-economic status, to fit every taste and style.
People gather in small churches to celebrate their greatest joys and find solace in their deepest sorrows. They mark our emotional and spiritual milestones including our births and our deaths, our weddings and our coming of age.
More people have found salvation, discipleship and ministry opportunities in small churches than anywhere else in history.
Poised for Greatness and Goodness
Imagine what any country, company or army would give to have over one billion people scattered into every nook and cranny across the face of the earth in groups averaging 25 to 35 people. (The average church in the world is 75-80, so the average small church is probably around 25-35).
Yes, small churches have problems – every church does. But our size isn’t one of them.
How have we missed this simple truth? Is it because we didn’t plan it ourselves?
This is God’s doing. It’s time we caught up to that fact.
Small churches are the most overlooked, under-appreciated and underutilized asset on earth. Including by those of us who are in them.
But it doesn’t have to stay that way. Small churches are poised to be the greatest force for good that the world has ever seen.
It’s time to turn us loose.
How? I take a look at that in my next post, The Astonishing Power of Small Churches: Fan the Flame.
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