A limited, and sometimes shrinking demographic can become your loudest voice of support. Those who want things to remain the same are not always happy with the possibility of change. Many times this group will sense a change is coming and will increase the volume of their support in hopes that you will cement the bricks of the status quo permanently in place with the mortar of their support. The noise of their affirmation is not always the best indicator of the effectiveness of your message. This is why we occasionally need a pair of eyes from outside our current demographic to view our lives and ministries through an unbiased lens.
The sound of support made by an overly affirming group can actually begin to drown out the gentle nudges of the Spirit that have been trying to get our attention. The Spirit of God has an assignment to let us know when a change needs to take place. If we cannot hear this instruction we will not be able to move past our familiar and personal Jerusalem to reach the uttermost parts of the Earth. The book of Acts records the story of these nudges and the effectiveness they released when engaged by brave leadership.
This not only applies to churches and ministries. It applies to all our endeavors if we are living for a Kingdom purpose. How we run a business, raise our kids or involve ourselves in local politics will be affected by how willing we are to move beyond the status quo and the affirming sound of those who do not want to make the changes required to move forward into new territory. This is not a human concept or strategy limited to the resources and empowerment of the natural world or human talent. It is actually a Kingdom concept birthed and sourced from the Spirit. If you embrace this kind of thinking, it will change how you deal with your kids as they grow and mature. It will change the marketing plan of a wise businessperson who adjusts the presentation of their product to reach a wider consumer base. It will change how you love your spouse as the relationship grows and matures.
The expanded audience of those whom God has prepared to hear your message may be hidden in the wings of culture deaf to your current presentation. They are waiting for you to retool your approach and your presentation so they can hear your message. The Early Church did this when they made the shift from only speaking to the believers in Jerusalem with concepts and language familiar to the Jews. They needed to expand the reach of their voice and the geography of their mission. In that expanded presentation, they were led by God to Gentile people groups scattered across the known world and since they took that first brave step, nothing has ever been the same.
“Your ears will hear a word behind you, ‘This is the way, walk in it,’ whenever you turn to the right or to the left” (Isaiah 30:21).