Something few seem to know is that while many congregations are in decline, second- and third-world Christian congregations are actually growing. In our first-world country we are looking to renew ourselves, to make ourselves relevant to the wider population, and to come up with programs that will attract people to consider a Christian lifestyle. Why is it that we, who have so many more resources than most third-world congregations, are not growing as they are?
Our group came to the conclusion that the difference has to do with trust. So often we have the understanding that we alone are in charge of our happiness or lack of it. The poor however aren’t under the same illusion. The difference may have something to do with the challenges faced in life. While a major third-world concern may be potable water, or enough to eat, our concerns are more along the lines of a vehicle that won’t work properly because some lint is stuck in a crevice of the electronic key.
Malachi tells us that our first-world attitudes may need some refining in order to be prepared for the Lord’s coming. Those who suffer from lack and want are those who more easily discover a trust in the Lord.
Lord, help me to understand you as do those who suffer want and need. Amen. — LGR