I became Christian in my mid-20’s. I take it very seriously, because I was on the other side (almost an atheist). I do not mind other people struggling with their faith. I had someone proudly tell me they were atheists, and I think she was kind of offended with my response of not really caring. Wish they were Christians, but it is their choice.
I have seen many successful churches that have lost the spark for the Gospel and proclaiming Jesus Christ as the Lord and Savior. Many almost do not have a functioning Sunday School program and have a high restrictions on giving to the needy.
A friend of mine described a small church he went to down south. He described a meeting where the debate was replacing the ratty old thread bare carpet or giving the money for the carpet to a needy group. They donated the money.
I am not saying churches do not need good sanctuaries and facilities. My church just built a new sanctuary. The old one was 91-years-old and in great need of repair. By the grace of God, we will get it paid off, and I pray it gets filled like it was last weekend with people.
Where my concern lies is we have to be on top of our game to “market” ourselves to the lost sheep. The people, like myself at one time, who do not have a church home and searching for more meaning in their life.
We will not be a “success” in my eyes unless we lead in a strong Christian way. Have our Sunday School’s filled up with kids and adults alike hungry to learn more about the Word of God. Not act like a country club where we only take certain type of people, but take all people. As an EMT, I like to say to my daughter, also an EMT, that we go into places that other people would not. The church must do the same.
And we must NEVER stop questioning our actions or thoughts. We are all sinful people. We must present the Gospel in a way we are not “holier than thou”, but in a way, it shows Christ’s forgiveness for all.
May God bless us all, and may we all be successful in ways that would please Him.