Impact Church

Passionately serving God and His people

Category: March 2018

Growth Requires Change

The church is alive. It moves and breathes. It can even be sick or well.  It can be wise or foolish. The church changes and grows just as believers in Christ change and grow. This is a sign of the church’s life and vitality.

The life of the church described in Acts 6 was exciting. It was in the very early days of the church, and the number of new Christians was growing daily. On one hand, growth was good and on the other it was overwhelming. Because of this rapid growth, it came to the attention of the Apostles, through the “grumbling” of the people, that certain needs within the church ministries were not being met.

The Apostles responded by appointing men to meet the need. It was not enough that the men appointed be hard workers; they needed to be “seven men of good reputation, full of the Spirit and of wisdom.” These seven were chosen by the body, and “laid hands upon” by the Apostles.

The early church was wise and humble enough to change how things were being done so the church could continue to grow. With this change, Acts 6:7 says, “the word of God increased, the number of the disciples multiplied greatly in Jerusalem, and a great many of the priests were obedient to the faith.” In addition to this, “signs and wonders” were performed by one of the seven amongst the people.

A living church will grow and change, just as the people who make it up. When a church can adapt like the church in Acts, there is no stopping God’s movement among them.

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Wielding Words

“And so the tongue is a small part of the body yet it carries great power!” James 3:5

The power of words is a prominent thread weaved throughout all of Scripture. In Genesis 1 that power is on full display as the Creator God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light. The Lord goes on to fashion the entire world using only His words. Then in Genesis 1:26, “God said, “Let us make mankind in our image, in our likeness, so that they may rule over the fish in the sea and the birds in the sky, over the livestock and all the wild animals, and over all the creatures that move along the ground.” Afterwards God speaks blessing and abundance over Adam and Eve.

These passages alone should be enough to convince us of how “weighty” words truly are. God spoke into nothing and created the entire universe. Furthermore, we were created in His image. Made to resemble our Father in everything we do and say. We are commissioned to rule in the same manner He does. We are hardwired to speak life, proclaim blessing, and affirm the abundance that is in Christ Jesus. Proverbs 18:21 declares, “Your words are so powerful that they will kill or give life.” We often place significant emphasis on the first portion of that verse. I know as a parent I, too, am guilty of highlighting the same. I have frequently instructed my children about things they shouldn’t say. This week, however, the Holy Spirit has prompted me to change my perspective. Instead of focusing so much on what we shouldn’t do why don’t we celebrate what we GET to do? As ambassadors of Christ we get to speak words that give life!

The people in our lives are precious souls that God has intentionally entrusted to us. We are, therefore, given the responsibility of lavishly loving and speaking life into them. Words properly wielded by a heart submitted to God can be a healing balm. So let’s get loud about speaking life, favor, blessings, and abundance. Let’s proclaim how good God is. Let’s share the truth about His extravagant love and generous grace. Let’s make sure everyone knows that there’s a cure for every ailment of the heart, mind, and body and His name is Jesus!

Jesus says in John 10:10, “A thief has only one thing in mind – he wants to steal, slaughter, and destroy. But I have come to give you everything in abundance, more than you expect – life in its fullness until you overflow!” One practical way to speak life is to see and speak about the abundant life we have in Christ.

Jesus came; past tense. Read the rest of this entry »