Last time we looked at the first to walls to our building process. They were people need answers, and people need community. Consider the following statistics about who or what was responsible in bringing a person to Christ.
|A special need drew them||1-2%|
|They just walked in||2-3%|
|Evangelistic crusade or TV program||0.5 %|
|A church program||2-3%|
|A friend or relative||75-90%|
Wall # 3 – People need cultural relevance
Ask someone why they don’t go to church and there are a few answers you’ll probably hear. Some went previously and were hurt and didn’t come back. Others are too busy. Still others just don’t believe in any of it. The core to all of these problems is that people don’t see church as being relevant to their lives.
Most churches are composed of a broad range of ages and encompasses more of less four generations of people. Each generation has different values and needs. If a person does not see the church as addressing their needs they are unlikely to waste their time. If the church is relevant, they’ll get over their past hurts, find time in their busy schedules, or otherwise just show up for church because they realize it is important. The problem the church has is that it is often only relevant to one generation (most often the generation that most of the church leaders are in.)
What is relevant to each of the generations in the church? (Golden Age, Baby Boomers, Generation X, kids & teens.)
Wall # 4 – People need time
As nice as it would be to wave a magic wand and see people come to Christ, we need to realize that this can be a slow process. Unless you are planting magic beans, you don’t plant the seed one day and go outside to harvest the fruit the next. Just as with planting, a lot of preparation and hard work is needed to see a plant bear fruit.
In farming, we know approximately how long a plant will take to grow. In evangelism, we have no idea how long or how much effort it will take to see results. We need to concentrate more on the work and less on the harvest. God will provide the harvest according to His time and His will. It is God who gets the increase, we are only responsible for planting and watering.
Studies have shown that on average a person needs to hear the gospel seven times before they accept it. It is human nature to get frustrated after rejection the first or second time. We need to understand that God’s timetable is not ours however.