Some boast in chariots and some in horses, but we will boast in the name of the LORD, our God. ~ Psalm 20:7

READING: Psalm 20

How can we live in a world of numbers but not be of it, especially in the world of church planting? The measuring of things that are supposed to be growing seems unavoidable. When my baby was born I wanted to know her weight and length because I deeply cared about the health and vitality of my newborn. I did not know a better, clearer way to be reassured that she was doing okay.

Categories like attendance, offering intake, and number of conversions are real and often telling and therefore easy to trust and take comfort in. It’s also easy to use these numbers to be critical or to boast.

The critical issue is not whether we take measurements but why. Human nature being what it is we tend to trust less in God and more in the human appearance of things. Numbers alone cannot be trusted. We can exceed benchmarks without making lasting kingdom impact. Activity is not the same as bearing fruit. Many leaders are busy, but really, there is only one thing that is truly important, and sometimes we have to choose. The Bible is filled with numbers but these numbers always tell the story of the glory of God.

On the great Last Day we will stand not before men but God alone. He is our judge, and we his servants. By his judgments alone we will stand or fall. And stand we will because he is able to make his servants to stand (Rom. 14:4).

Assess your church but assess also your heart for God does not see as man sees.

God, I want to do well in your eyes and in the eyes of man. Help me to stand. Help me to be in the world but not of it. Amen.

Peter Sung