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5 Essentials for Today’s Church To Thrive


If you quietly believe your church isn’t that different today than two years ago, consider that because the culture has dramatically changed, people see, perceive, and experience your church differently.

That reality is unavoidable.

The essential question is — Are people experiencing the difference in your church that you want them to experience?

In most cases, the difference is shaped by nuance, how you say what you say, how you treat people, and the values and convictions you stand for – not your programs.

The new church is people over methods. Yes, it’s always been about people, but we have leaned heavily into models and methods for decades, and while they will still serve you well, people must come first.

As little as twenty-five to thirty years ago, society looked at the local church, generally speaking, with favor. It was seen as good even for many that didn’t go themselves. Today, the church (again, in general) is often seen as something unnecessary, irrelevant, or maybe even questioned.

It’s my observation that people are considering things of a spiritual nature more and more because, intuitively, they’re at a loss for answers in a world that increasingly doesn’t make sense.

Turning the tide is not easy, and it’s a long road ahead, but it’s unquestionably doable! I have great faith in the Church because I have faith in a great God.

So, where do we start?

Start where people are and meet them with the gospel.

The great search today is for:

  • Peace over anxiety
  • Truth over opinions
  • Meaning over superficial
  • Joy over anger
  • Freedom over addiction

The longer the absence of peace, truth, meaning, joy, and freedom continues, the greater the discontent.


  • Many are deciding if they will pursue God.
  • They are deciding if they will trust and value “church.”
  • And among them, some will consider trying your church.

More than ever, people are searching for answers, and you have them. Your church carries the truth of the gospel, the grace of your community, and the power of the Holy Spirit.

If we continue to become better at what we are good at, the church will continue to be the hope of the world.

Current culture is more complex, it’s changing rapidly, and we must keep up.

The church is good at these things on the following list, but we must get better.

5 Essentials for Today’s Church to Thrive

1. A Spirit of Grace and Kindness That Permeates the Culture

The great void in current culture is grace and kindness. Thankfully, we see it in action, but it’s not the overall tone in most communities.