Resilience of the Small Church

July 1, 2022
11:57 pm

Resilience of the Small Church
By Karl Vaters
June 6, 2022

There is an undeniable, irresistible resilience of the small church. Small churches are not better than big churches. Big churches aren’t better than small ones.
The arguments we have about size are silly, dangerous and missing the point.
Everyone has something unique to contribute.
As for small churches, here are some of the most undeniable, irresistible blessings they bring to the body of Christ:
The Unkillable Resilience of the Small Church

Small churches have always been and will always be the most common, most resilient and most adaptable expression of the body of Christ.
Small churches are like the cockroaches of the Christian world.
After whatever cultural nuclear bomb comes along to destroy all other visible expressions of the church, small congregations will scurry out from under the baseboards.
When the money runs out, small churches will find a way to keep going.
When there’s a failure of leadership, small churches will lead themselves.
After denominations topple, small churches will rise up.
The Adaptable Resilience of the Small Church
After what’s old and stale has faded away, small churches will adapt to a new reality.
After what’s cool and new starts feeling cliched and trite, small churches will still matter.
After most of our church buildings, both large and small, are empty, demolished or converted into hipster apartments, small churches will find somewhere else to meet.
After we’ve grown sick of programs and events, small churches will remind us of our essential need for relationship.
After we’ve torn ourselves apart with politically-charged rhetoric, small churches will still be there to bring God’s people together.
After persecution has come, small churches will meet in secret.
After our plans have failed, small churches will still be a big part of God’s plan.

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The Apostle Paul mentions the armor of God in Ephesians chapter 6 and the command or necessity to “Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of his might. Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the schemes of the devil” (Eph 6:10-11). We will certainly need this armor because “we do not wrestle against flesh and blood.



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