The world and its geo-political sensitivities are far different from the last century. While industries, businesses, and politicians have to contend with phenomenal changes, it appears that Western churches and missions are unwilling to adapt to the complex new realities.
Take, for example, the lingo used by mission organizations. Many still use old language, which triggers deep hostility and violence against Christians. Terms like “conversion” or “unreached people groups” cause great trouble.
Faith, particularly Christian faith, is an irreplaceable force for good in society. Its decline will leave America less healthy, less charitable, less connected, and less capable of dealing with major social ills without government intervention. Evidence suggests it already has.
At the same time, it is essential to remember that these benefits are byproducts of faith, not the main point. Anyone who hopes to halt and reverse church decline must remember what that main point is.
Westside Christian Fellowship in Southern California arose from a desperate need to encourage Christians to seek God with all their heart, soul, mind, and strength. The overwhelming response simply reflects the need that we all have for the truths found in God's Word.
Propelled by prayer and passion, Westside went against all conventional wisdom by offering services on Saturday evenings for the first five years with no core team, no affiliation, no formal education, and no money. To many, this looked like an invitation for disaster, not success. But here is the first point: