There’s not much time left until Christmas now but there’s probably just enough time to order John James’ excellent little book “Renewal: Church Revitalisation along the way of the Cross” from our good friends 10 of those.
John is the pastor of Crossway church in Northfield, Birmingham. In 2010, shortly after finishing at Theological College, he went with a small team from another local church to help a struggling church. That church had chosen not to die but to seek revitalisation so that it could be a viable gospel witness in a needy area.
I’ve had the privilege of preaching at Crossway. Today, you’ll find a lively gathering of people covering all generations and from a variety of backgrounds. This is a church that is growing not by transferring Christians from one church to the next but by getting out into the community and sharing the good news. In the book, you’ll find stories of people whose lives have been changed by the good news. This is not about big rallies and mass conversions. Rather, it’s about steady discipleship, 1-1 study, meeting with families in homes. It’s about being an everyday church.
The book makes a clear and compelling case for church revitalisation and its valid place alongside more popular evangelism strategies such as church planting. It then takes you on a journey through the life of a revitalisation project, through the ups and downs, confronting the challenges and navigating pitfalls along the way. Continue reading