Sometimes spending time with one’s grandchildren just has to be put before writing a blog, you know? That was the case for me last week when my daughter and her family flew in from Chicago for the week. But here’s the truth of the matter: she came with computer in hand, wrote and posted her blog (along with doing other digital things) during our time together. I, on the other hand, didn’t give the idea of blogging a second thought! That defines our generational differences in today’s world, don’t you think?
But now that I’m back in the saddle, so to speak, I find myself running ahead to what’s in store for PLC. Though I won’t attempt to predict too far into the future, whatever happens with us as a church is bound to include more than blogging philosophies, isn’t it? What about the “hope” Pastor Sean mentioned – that we all, himself included, would be in a “different place spiritually” three years from now? Hmmm…
If we’re honest with ourselves, the first question we have to ask is: Where am I now, spiritually speaking? How can I measure it? I recently have been reading about spiritual growth patterns that were documented in a study called “Reveal” by Willow Creek Community Church in Barrington, Illinois. In this study, the leaders of Willow Creek started by asking this penetrating question: Is our church really helping people to become devoted followers of Christ, or are we just giving them a nice place to go to church? The answers surprised them, and sent them on a new course of action. (Rest easy, the content did not change at Willow Creek, just the packaging!)
Over a quarter million people have now taken the REVEAL Spiritual Life Survey that Willow Creek developed. By answering a number of basic questions concerning one’s spiritual life, they have found people fall into one of four categories: Exploring Christ, Growing in Christ, Close to Christ, or Christ-Centered. What was shocking for me as a reader was the fact that many who attend church regularly and said they were Exploring Christ had never crossed over to making a commitment to follow Christ! They simply enjoyed belonging to “the club.”
Make no mistake, to grow spiritually takes intentionality and a plan! Each of us is different, unique, and fearfully and wonderfully made with various personalities, learning styles, and internal and external motivations. But God has given us a choice – to know about him or to really know him through an ongoing, ever-growing relationship with him. So, where will you be in three years in your walk with Jesus, my friend? It’s up to you, isn’t it? But as for me, I will do all I can to help you – and hope we can make this journey together!