Monday, February 2, 2009

Breadth and Depth

I'm not the world's biggest John MacArthur fan, but I congratulate him on 40 years of ministry at his home church in California. I heard this quote from him, and thought it was great:

Worry about the depth of your ministry,. . and let God deal with the breadth of your ministry.

That may seem like a no-brainer. . . "yeah, we'll make sure we're going deep and teaching sound doctine, and leave the results to God."
Ironically enough, many modern churches do exactly the opposite and spend all their time worrying about the breadth of their ministry (how big their church is) and let God "handle" the depth of the ministry by hoping folks go "deeper" than the weekend services on their own (not necessarily a bad thing) and simply suggesting resources from outside the church for their spiritual development. They'll say "we'll leave the conviction to God".

We should have large gatherings that are deep and full of truth (and grace and joy), we should encourage people to live in communites marked by depth and truth (and grace and joy), and let our ministry be known as a place where those things happen. God will do what He wills with the "success" of a church doing those things. And those are Hands you like to be in.

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