Surprises Since My Book Came Out

I’ve been very pleasantly surprised by two things since my book came out:

First, that people have actually bought copies! I honestly didn’t know what to expect, and to have had sales (OK, not New York Times bestseller status, but still, sales!) is a wonderful surprise and I am humbled and honored that anyone should put down their money on it. Related: people have actually asked me to sign their copy. Wow, is *that* ever an odd feeling!

book cover

Second: God’s prevenient grace is already at work. Among the sales are two to close people in my life–people who have never, or very very rarely, darkened the door to any church. Yes, yes, I know, they’re buying it just because it’s me. But still: I am hopeful that they are able to enjoy it, and find themselves wondering if there’s really more to this Christianity thing than they’d given it credit for. If at the end of the day even one person buys this, reads it, and it helps them on their journey to come to Christ, then the whole thing will be worthwhile.

So as Jay Sherman says, “Buy my book!”

 

Is Your Church Declining?

I’ve been through enough ups and downs in different congregations to where I’m getting used to it, which is sad in its own way: Christ’s church is intended always to be moving, growing, taking his word into the world. But alas, there are churches that aren’t.

Thom Rainer has some thoughts on what’s behind a declining church, and it has to do with what’s being made front and center in the congregation. (Hint: it isn’t Jesus.) His excellent article, “The Most Common Factor in Declining Churches,” ought to be required reading not only in ones where attendance and spirits are falling, but in growing ones–lest they make the same mistakes someday. Give a read and let me know what you think.