What’s Wrong with My Church?

At some point, in a struggling church, someone who cares will ask the question, “What’s wrong with my church?” For the church to revive and thrive, this question must be asked, answered, and responded to with faith, repentance, and commitment!

I recently read something concerning the cause of trouble with churches in Dr. Gregory Frizzell’s book Returning to Holiness: A Personal and Churchwide Journey to Revival. [1] It resonated with me, and I see it as enlightening—something every church member should read.[2] Perhaps his words will help us all to answer this question.

Frizzel writes:

Are you known as a peacemaker who strengthens church unity or, are you often part of some contentious argument? Do you act like a “self-appointed” critic and judge to set everyone else straight? Are you quick to talk about the shortcomings of others? Do you increase the faith of your church by a positive attitude or, do you tear it down by focusing on its imperfections? Are you quick to divide up and “take sides?” Do you tend to be a part of church cliques? Are you known as a complainer and one who is easily upset? Have you been critical and condemning of those with different tastes in music and worship style?

Such subtle sins of attitude and speech are often more damaging to a church than obvious outward sins. In truth, a negative church member can often to more damage than an alcoholic! Does God convict you of any tendency to be contentious, divisive or negative? Do not make excuses or justify your behavior. If you are honest in your confession and repentance, God will totally transform your heart. He will give you wisdom to deal with honest differences of opinion without becoming angry and divisive. God will also lead you to ask for forgiveness from those you have offended (Matthew 5:23-24).

1 Timothy 5:17 – “Let the elders that rule well be counted worthy of double honor, especially they who labor in the word and doctrine.”

This generation has witnessed a shocking increase of preachers and lay-leaders being fired or mistreated for small, (often exaggerated) reasons.[3] Certainly when a leader sins, he or she must be dealt with. Yet today, many churches have forgotten the biblical principle of respect and honor for those who lead the church. In many churches, the Holy Spirit is quenched because the congregation has sinned against a pastor or church leader.

When churches experience revival, they often must seek forgiveness from pastors or leaders they may have mistreated. Many churches may also need to ask forgiveness from a former pastor or lay-leader. (In other cases, pastors must ask the forgiveness of churches they have wronged).

A glorious and growing trend is the number of churches that are getting right with other congregations that formed as “a split” from their own. This does not mean churches have to reunite, but it does mean they must fully forgive past offenses. Until you get right with those you fought in the past, there will not be full blessing on your church or your life!

So, What’s Wrong with Your Church? Instead of blaming your pastor or others, perhaps the best thing for us to do is to look inward. Ask yourself this question: “If every member of my church were just like me, what kind of church would my church be?”

Let the Transformation of Your Church begin within You!


As always, we love reading your comments and interacting with those who are interested in our lives. So please feel free to share your thoughts with us on this blog, Facebook, Twitter, Google+, or any other way you prefer.

[1] Gregory R. Frizzell, Returning to Holiness, (Memphis, Tennessee: The Master Design, 2000).

[2] Frizzell, 35.

[3] G. Lloyd Redeger, Clergy Killers, (Louisville, Kentucky: Westminster J Knox Press, 1997), 32.

About Derek McCosh

I am a fortunate recipient of the Grace of God, a follower of Jesus Christ, a husband, a father, a pastor, and a church planter. I am passionate about glorifying God through evangelism, missions, expository preaching, teaching and mentoring. I am a husband to the most gorgeous woman alive, who loves Jesus and serves as a rock for me. I am a father of two beautiful daughters, a loving special needs son, and of two active Ghanian sons. I blog about whatever I feel led to share to encourage others to follow Jesus and live out their faith for His glory!
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