Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Small is cool.

A few months back I read yet another great book on my Kindle.  This one was written by a few people I'm growing to truly respect...people who are a journey of the Truth of Jesus and His church.  It is a small book (pun intended) and a great read.  I highly recommend it.

Then last week I read a tweet from
@kySimpleChurch which is an alliance of people doing church in Kentucky.  The tweet went something like "Jesus didn't seem all that interested in drawing a crowd. What if we took a similar approach?"  Again, this concept that small might be OK, even better, perhaps more Biblical.

So why do we, as Christians, think that bigger is better?  Isn't that ironic?  We are always trying to "grow the church" which always means building size, numbers of people "attending," "programs," and cash.  Jesus never spoke of such nonsense, but it seems to be all we focus on. We think that more numbers, more cash, more goings on, and bigger buildings are an indication of life transformation.  Really?  My casual observation (let alone research) indicates that is not at all the case.

Maybe that's because Jesus didn't preach personal comfort and wealth.  Maybe it's because He calls us to lose our lives instead of saving them.  That means us as individuals and us as the church...the group of people following Him.

Whaddya think?  Is small big?  Is small cool?  Is small better?


Mark Heotzler said...

I agree. As a bigger person, there is nothing I hate more than being asked all of the time if I play basketball. That has nothing to do with your blog but I thought it was a good time to share.

On a more serious note, remember that the early churches especially Ephesus and Corinth were very large. Probably didn't all meet at the same building but we do know that they acted as one church. There is nothing wrong with a large church, but if there is no small group accountability, discipleship, and personal growth, then the church itself is useless. Even the early churches like the church in Galatia and Corinth needed harsh rebuking from Paul. Why did they stumble? Because they all lost sight of the bigger picture. My assumption is that they focused too much on the Church as a whole and forgot about the individuals that make up the church.

When we all try to be the Body, we forget about the plan God has for us as individual pieces of the Whole. Larger Churches pose a greater risk to this mentality.

Brett said...

The "probably didn't meet at the same building" is key. Acting as one church is what we're always called to do. It seems that the bigger the building, budget, and program, the less we tend in that direction.

Good remarks my friend, especially the part about being tall.

Benjamin Shimomura said...

My church is small--13 is normal, 16 is great, and last week we had 9! I love my church family and at the size we are, we really have to work together to get anything done.