Church growth and the moving of God’s Spirit are not the same thing. We who live along the Interstate 35 corridor have been watching this area grow for a decades. Along with this growth almost every church that created any room to grow, grew. Growing a church in a growing population can be as simple as unlocking the doors on Sunday morning.
Count me among those with a holy disatisfaction with mere growth in numbers. I want to see lives changed. I want to see evidence of the moving and working of the Holy Spirit. This is exactly what I am privileged to see. I regularly see the evidence of God’s activity in the lives of people. I am aware of a great number of situations in which God is doing a work in people’s lives that could not be explained apart from His transforming power. When I scan the faces in the crowd, the Holy Spirit reminds me of where many of those faces I see have come from. I am a walking library of the stories of lives transformed by the touch of God.
Wouldn’t it be interesting if instead of asking how many people attended a given church on Sunday, the question was how many changed lives have emerged from this or that church? Somehow I think that is the statistic that matters most to Jesus.