Recently, I was part of a training for churches in an area that had been hit by hurricane Katrina. It has been three years now and the churches and the community are still recovering from the impact of the effects of Katrina. What we found was that in a crisis the churches struggle with the same phases of emotions as the people do, of shock, denial, anger and survival.

We found that most churches in this gulf coast community have stayed in the survival mode. They are not focusing on reaching out to the community with the gospel. Instead the churches are almost frozen in time and are complacent  and do not have a passion.  The churches had become co-dependent on the disaster relief teams to do the work of evangelism and meet their needs. But three years later, they are still seating and waitng almost in a coma or semi-sleep. Now this is not to criticize them but to making an observation about the state of the churches in post crisis situations. This is not true about all the churches but a percentage of churches.

A 2-day training for churches was conducted for the churhces in the gulf coast region. The components consisted of prayerwalking, several methods of evangelism, using the evangecube, how to use a gospel tract, and writing out their personal testimony. The results were amazing. The churches that participated went out for 1 1/2 hours of community evangelism and six people trusted in Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior. Wow! They had a wake up call. One of the key leaders among the churches said that the training was exactly what the churches needed. He even suggested that more trainings of similar type be conducted for other churches in the area.

I recently heard the president of a theological seminary whose school had been hit by Katrina that he had been working so hard on getting their school up to normal operations that last three years. Now he was ready to refocus on the what was happening around him. He revealed that a his denomination’s churches were on plateaued and declining.

A study had been conducted of churches who had baptized one person in January and one in December of the same year. Fourty percent of the churches surveyed in this study were in the fourty percent. He then made a statement that made my heart stink from my stomach to my feet. He said that God revealed to him that it was happening on his watch. I felt sick to my stomach. I was sick because it was happening on my watch too!

I have made a re-commitment to God that I am going to be more intentional than I have ever been. I will do all that God allows me to do to help turn the ship around before it is too late. I do not want someone to say that our denomination became a has been denomination, like others who had once been strong and evangelical. I need to do what Jesus said, “Go and make disciples of all peoples, teaching to obey what Jesus has taught us.

I get another opportuntiy in 2009, another year to live for Jesus and be His witness. I get 365 days, 12 months 4  weeks per month, 7 days a week, 24 hours in a day, 60 minutes in one hour, 60 seconds in one minute to tell someone about Jesus Christ. Praise God for the salvation He has given me. I do not want to waste it. Join me in telling as many people about Jesus as you can in 09. Pray that I will be bold in sharing Jesus with lost people. I am praying for you that you will have the blessing of sharing Christ.

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