Have you ever wondered what healthy churches look like? Over the years I’ve been collecting data, testimonies, and experiences. I have discovered a concise list of proofs. Whether it is a church that is healthy, on life-support, or simply wants to gauge their condition; these proofs must be present and managed well to cultivate health.
Life Transformation (Romans 12:1)
Life transformation comes from being renewed. For a church to become healthy it must start with you. Your life transformation will ooze or be caught by the church. Dallas Willard said, “ Spiritual formation, in the tradition of Jesus Christ, is a process of transformation. It happens when the inmost dimension of the human being (the heart, spirit or will) are transformed by Christ. Then the natural expressions of life become prompted and powered by Christ.”
How is your life transformation changing your Church?
Vision Casting (Acts 2:17)
Vision should leak out of everything the church says and does. Ultimately, any church’s vision should point back to God’s ultimate purpose. God desires people to enjoy him and constantly express his greatness. The process of casting vision is prayerfully forming a mental image in order to express God’s direction, plan, and guidance. Vision casting is important because it provides the Church with a sense of God’s direction for a specific time, place, and reason.
How can you align your Church with God’s vision?
Discipleship (Matthew 28:18-20)
God wants all people to become disciples, followers of Christ. The only work of the Church is to make disciples and equip those disciples to make new disciples. Discipleship is the process by which people grow in their understanding of God’s word, equipping of the Holy Spirit to overcome the pressures and trials of life, and to become more Christlike (Gotquestions.org).
How can your discipleship/equipping help your Church?
Multiplication (2 Timothy 2:2)
Everything that lives multiplies. If a church is alive it will multiply. Multiplication is defined as Christians surrendering to the leadership of the Spirit of God resulting in additional disciples, service, and groups. This culminates in the formation of new churches. Every church that exists was started through multiplication.
How can you help your Church multiply?
Contextualization (Acts 17:22-23 / 1 Corinthians 9:22)
Contextualization takes a concrete truth and gives it the power to impact people of any time, culture, setting, and background. Contextualization is the process of assigning biblical application of scripture and purpose to serve the spiritual needs of a given environment. Contextualization allows a text or action to be executed without compromising the integrity of God’s word or discipleship.
How can you contextualize the Bible to help your Church reach more people groups?
Logistics (Acts 20:28)
Logistics is planning, implementing, and coordinating the church’s operations. Without logistics everything falls apart. Here questions are prayerfully, strategically, and organizationally minded. The plan is also monitored to ensure things are taken care of. This ensures the operations of the church are not neglected.
How can you logistically support your Church?
1 Peter 2:9 (NIV) says, “But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, Godʼs special possession, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light.” You are the church. For the Church to be healthy it takes you stepping in to the life that God has gifted you. Link with others that understand this truth, follow God’s leadership, and reflect the world the greatness of our God.
When Jesus met the women at the well, (John 4) her life was changed and a healthy church was formed. Let’s look at the proof. The woman at the well was a new believer as she walked away. She was healthy because of Jesus. She had a transformed life, she cast vision to the community, she and Jesus began to disciple and equip the new believers, the gospel ministry was being multiplied, the message of Jesus was contextualized for her people group, and there was a logistical plan by Jesus and the women to reach into her circle of influence to impact lostness.
Can you find a clear pattern of health like this in your church?
What may God be asking you to do to prepare your church for health?