If you have been reading this site you are probably aware there are some crazy things going on in RI. If you have not been reading this then you need to.
There are two Youth leaders in my cChurch. A woman named Suzanne and I. We have been noticing things as of late that have made us take pause.
I can sum it up with this. “lukewarm Christianity”
There is this sense that we don’t have to be Dangerous Christian’s. We don’t have to have a sense of urgency for the sake of the kingdom.
I could expound on this more, but it would turn into a long sermon and one I have preached 3 times in the last two weeks.
Any way we have been dealing with this in the youth ministry and I have challenged it verbally. However lately it has felt like we are riding a bike thru cement. Meaning we are getting nowhere.
Mark Batterson said “we are educated beyond our obedience”.
Isn’t that so true we are drilled each week with sermon after sermon and we have our heads filled with stuff we won’t even attempt to obey.
So what do we need to counteract lukewarm Christianity? What do we need to break the spirit of apathy?
Do we need another sermon? Do we need more instruction or discussion? Do people need to be smacked in the head?
Lets look at the word for a second. In Acts it was during Pentecost when the presence of God fell on the church like no other time and 3000 people were added to the church in one day. They however had to accept the word and internalize it. They had to ingest it. Something interesting about pentecost that doesn’t get preached much took sacrifice. Sacrifice is kinda scary so we tread lightly with it. Look at this though…the church before pentecost prayed for 50 days and then… Are you with me? And then after 50 days the spirit of God fell.
Check this out:
2nd Chron. 7:14 if my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and will heal their land.
There are a few key things in this passage.
- “if my PEOPLE..” does it say “if 3 people…”? no it says “MY PEOPLE” who are called by name. That means all of us.
- “will humble….and turn….” That sure like like we have to be moving towards changing who we are. It means we need to lose our life so we can find life.
- “THEN will I….heal their land” The word then is huge. This is a simple process God gave us and we seem to thing we can bypass the first part.
A pastor of a local church that our church prays with got up at the national day of pray meeting we had and said this: (paraphrased)
“we got it all wrong…We have over 200+ people coming on Sunday mornings for church and less than 10% of that come to prayer…”
I know that is true almost everywhere. This is because we will do what God wants unless it affects what we want. We need a vision for the lost. We need to be urgent for the kingdom. and most of all if we want to see God heal our land we need to be in prayer.
So here comes the announcement part:
After praying and meeting with our church leadership over the youth ministry we decided to cancel all youth meetings and youth services for the next 3 months.
We have instead decided to dedicate these 3 months much like the apostles did before Pentecost. In prayer and fasting for a generation that needs healing.
We were very nervous about this decision and we were worried at first this was maybe out of personal frustration or discouragement.
Then we had a youth prayer meeting with the 6 churches here we pray with and the Spirit of God moved in that meeting and showed all the churches there that not only was this of God, but we all needed to be in.
So now the 4 churches that were present that night have dedicated June-August to pray for healing in the hearts of the young people here and that the presence of God would fall just like it did in Acts.
The numbers don’t lie. There are thousands upon thousands upon thousands of people age 13-25 on the island we are on. If we took the total amount of kids in our groups though we have about 60 kids going to church of the thousands who don’t.
The only way this horrible number can be shifted is by praying for the hand of God to move.
There are a few more things to this that I will discuss later. Some of it is a realization that lukewarm Christians aren’t just those under 25, but we are dedicating to pray for those under 25 for 3 months in our own churches and together with 4-6 other churches as well.
God is going to do something HUGE. We all know it and I can’t wait to see it.
I want to challenge you if you are in ministry to take stock in what you are doing in your church. Does anybody come to prayer? Do you even have prayer? Are people being drilled with knowledge and not ingesting and applying it?
Go back and read acts and let God speak to you about where ministry begins and ends. The most important meeting a hurch has is it’s prayer meeting.