In almost every congregation, there is some need for revitalization. However, in the majority of congregations, there is an urgent and widespread need for revitalization. Columbine is a congregation that needs revitalization. That is the first step, recognizing and admitting that revitalizing change needs to take place among us.
The second step is to pray about this congregation being revitalized. If the public prayers that are given here were analyzed, what would someone conclude that the greatest need (problem) at Columbine is? If the private prayers of the Columbine members were studied, how much of an emphasis on the spiritual health and vitality of this congregation is included?
My suspicion is that the emphasis in our prayers needs to change.
The apostle Paul is a good model for our prayers. As one reads Paul’s letters to the various congregations, a prayer for that congregation is normally included.
What one finds in Paul’s prayers is an emphasis on the spiritual health of those congregations (for example: 1 Cor. 1:4-8; Eph. 1:15-23; 3:14-21; Phil. 1:9-11; Col. 1:9-14; 1 Thess. 1:2-3; 3:9-13). His focus is on what they have and what they need to continue to grow in. Both of those things are important.
If the focus is only on what we do not have in the congregation, we will fail to appreciate what we do have. When we focus on members who leave and perceived lack of resources, we will not appreciate what we have. Yet, we do not want to be blind to the areas we need to grow in.
Let’s pray for God to work through Columbine for His glory. Let us pray that God sends families to us. Let us pray that God sends seekers to us. Let us pray that we can ways to effectively reach the community around us.
The answer to that prayer may end up looking very different than you and I imagine that it will. But, if we allow God to work through us, that is what is important (even if what I envision is wrong).