Killer # 5: Human Expectations

Self reliance is an admirable quality that I have found in our rural churches.  They are independent and strong.  They “get-r-done!”  This can be a doubleedged sword though when the pendulum of independence swings so far that we forget that God still desires to do supernatural things through us.  We often come to church expecting nothing more than what people can deliver.  People in the rural church are great.  They are strong, smart, resourceful, and gifted in many ways, but they are not God.  They, in and of themselves, cannot produce God sized results.   

Some rural churches have been so self reliant for so long they have forgotten to see things with spiritual eyes.  They have forgotten what it means to seek God’s strength, God’s wisdom, and God’s resources.  A church cannot survive long on its humanity.  Churches are called supernaturally for a supernatural purpose.  The great commission cannot be fulfilled in our humanity.  Real ministry within the church cannot take place without the discernment and wisdom given by the Holy Spirit.  Worship becomes stale.  Discipleship becomes boring.  Fellowship is man-centered.  Evangelism becomes a chore and our prayers become stilted when our expectations are only human.  The church suffers when we don’t expect God to show up.  The church dies without the expectation that God will do something extra ordinary.  A church might exist for a while focused on itself, but it won’t really be the church.  Human expectations kill the church.

Published in: on August 27, 2008 at 6:18 pm  Comments (2)  


  1. This is a major problem for the rural agrarian church. We never know what the harvest will bring. Will the crops be good? Will I get hailed out? Will it rain? Will the comodity prices be high enough but not too high? What will diesel and fertilizer cost next year? What can I sell my calves for? What will feed cost? So many questions. I certainly can’t count on anything next year. So we must survive as we are rather than step out in faith to see what could be.

  2. Tom,

    It always seems like we are holding something back in reserve. I wonder what could happen if we laid it all out on the table.

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