Grow Your Patience!
And let us not grow weary while doing good, for in due season we shall reap if we do not lose heart.Galatians 6:9 (NKJV)
I once attended a church in Virginia Beach, Virginia who was trying to increase their attendance by putting basketball goals all around the inside of the church. The preacher wore a referee’s uniform and used basketball lingo in his sermon. The church thought if they used the things of the world to attract the children of the neighborhood to their service, they could grow their attendance. What they forgot is that God gives the increase, not the world. When I visited the church in 1997 their attendance was about 75. When I left Virginia Beach about 10 years later, the church had disbanded, and the world had built apartments where the church building once stood. The apartment buildings were filled.
This church had a young pastor who was just out of the Seminary. He had been taught to fill the church with children’s programs and the church would grow. This young pastor forgot two things:
- Children of today have not been raised in a Church environment and are more interested in the things of the world. They had rather go to the beach than to church.
- When children go away to college, only an exceedingly small percentage of them return to their hometown. Most of them secure jobs in larger cities.
Children are not the ones who fund a church, they are not the ones who teach the church, they are not the ones who lead the church. Their parents are the ones the church should have tried to attract, and you can’t do that with basketball. To attract adults, you must use logic, truth, and intelligence.
The Seminaries should be run by Preachers, not educators. The only curriculum used in the Seminaries should be the bible. God has included the complete plan to increasing a church in His word.
There was another church in a small town in California who had 17 members and wanted to grow. They were faithful to God and prayed to him for guidance. The guidance God gave them was to build another church in another town, a satellite church. The guidance scared them a bit, but they trusted God. When the second church was completed, they saw their attendance had grown. The Lord led them to start yet another church and again their own attendance grew more.
By trusting God and having the patience to wait on him and do what He asked instead of depending on the world, this little church of 17 not only has several satellite churches but this little church has an average attendance of 3000 on Sunday morning.
Growing patience is not about the world. There is no pill, no fertilizer, no treatment that the world can give that will help a person grow patience.
God, on the other hand, has been helping people grow patient since the beginning of time. All you need to do is believe in Jesus Christ and give your life to Him. You see patience is not something you grow after all. Patience is a gift from God. Only God can help you grow in Patience. You will find that no one who is of the world has the patience to grow.
Just trust God and the patience will come. As this little church found out, it’s not the world that grows a church, it is trust in God and the patience that God gives that grows churches and people.