4 Prayers for the New Year
As we begin 2020 together in the trenches of church revitalization and replanting, I simply wanted to know how I’m praying for your ministry, and for the replanting movement as a whole, this next year.
1. I’m praying you will baptize more in 2020 than you did in 2019.
Baptism numbers are certainly not the be-all, end-all of ministry. But they are a marker. Baptisms mean you are reaching folks with the gospel. In some cases, it means someone who’s been attending your church for months — or maybe even years — has come to realize their need to obey the command and Christ’s example to be baptized.
Whether you baptized no one or 50 people in 2019, I’m praying for even more fruit. So often, as the baptismal waters are stirred, the hearts of the people in the pews are stirred to share the gospel with more urgency.
2. I’m praying the hearts of the people in your church will warm to the gospel.
In almost every instance I’ve encountered, churches in need of revitalization or replanting have grown cold toward the gospel. Usually, this happened over a number of years or even decades. In 2020, I’m praying that, as you proclaim the glorious truths of the gospel, people respond by returning to the Lord in repentance.
3. I’m praying you build relationships with young men.
Most often, young men are scarce in the early days of church revitalization and replanting. And yet, in every church I’ve encountered that has been successfully replanted, young men were a key part of the process. I’m praying you will be able to develop key relationships with young men in your community in 2020.
4. I’m praying for more churches to realize the replanting opportunities that exist.
In 2019, the Replant Team documented more than 200 Southern Baptist churches in North America that entered into a replanting process of some kind. That is incredible! But it’s also just a drop in the bucket of the number of dying and declining churches throughout the SBC. So I’m praying many more churches will begin having the hard conversations about what their futures might look like in the next three to five years. And I’m praying that hundreds will begin asking what it might look like to begin the process of replanting. God is doing amazing things through churches that once were on the verge of death.
If the Replant Team can help your church in any way, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org to begin the conversation today!