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What REALLY makes a church grow?


Every now and then you run across a page of prose that almost reads like poetry. It makes you want to read it over and over. It slices through the fog of confusion. It has the ring of truth. It is self-authenticating. It doesn't have to be proved. You know it is true and you know it is important the first time you read it.

Such was the case when I read the firs few lines of Greg Groeschel's excellent book, IT. It fit well as a note in the Masterwork lesson I was working on this morning. Check this out:


Some ministries have it. Some don't.

Most churches want it. Few have it.

When a church has it, everyone can tell. And when one doesn't … everyone can tell.

The same is true with leaders. Some leaders have it. Some don't. And it or it-lessness is obvious.

It is always unique. It is always powerful. It is always life-changing.

That's its upside. It has another side too. It attracts critics. It is controversial. Many people misunderstand it. It's hard to find, but it's impossible to miss.

By now you're probably asking, What is it? My answer is …

I don't know.

Really, I don't.

Here's what I do know: if you've ever been part of a ministry that had it, you knew you were part of something special. In other words, you knew it when you saw it. And it was an awesome work of God that couldn't be contained, couldn't be harnessed, and couldn't be explained.

If you've never seen it up close, ask around and see if you can find it. Just listen to what people in your community are saying. I promise, if it has come to a ministry near you, people are talking about it. When a ministry has it, the ground seems to rumble. Everyone hears about it. “You have to visit this church. What's going on there is incredible. Trust me. You have to check it out.”

And people do check out an it-filled church. Not only do they kick the tires but many of them actually join it. They seem to intuitively grasp whatever it is. To an outsider with a critical heart, these converts simply drank the Kool-Aid and became fanatics. But to those who experience it, life is different. They're changed. They're passionate. They're excited. They know they're part of what God's doing. And they want everyone to know about it. — It: How Churches and Leaders Can Get It and Keep It (Craig Groeschel)

By the way, the hallmark of my online lessons is quotes like this. I buy an average of a book per lesson so that I can provide short quotes from world class writing like this. Check out Good Questions Have Groups talking at www.joshhunt.com



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