For the last 2000 years the Church, in its various forms, styles and organizations has been the guardian of the true hope of the world. Over the past 20 centuries of human history when change has been the most intense, the Church, by God’s grace, has thrived.
As we enter the third millennium, the Church once again encounters an opportunity to be a positive force for change. In the Coatesville area especially, a multitude of opportunities are becoming available for the good news of the Gospel to prove itself. The desire of Life Transforming Ministries is to accelerate the return of the truth of the Gospel to the forefront of community.
In essence, LTM serves as advocates of reconciliation and restoration.
Therefore, we seek to serve the Body of Christ by connecting and resourcing innovative Christian leaders and effective churches who agree that Christ deserves to be exalted as the living hope of the City of Coatesville.
Steps to Transformation
Prayer and humility always precedes community transformation. But, the first evidence of a coming transformation is the building of trusting relationships between pastors, christian leaders, and churches within the community. Therefore, our first priority is to establish an extra-denominational relationship network. After establishing trust where there once was no trust, we then seek to build collaborative ministries to address the spiritual and social ills of our communities. We learn that there is a place in Christ that we can hold on to our distinctives and still display true fellowship. Lastly, LTM seeks to serve the Christian community by building bridges with the government, educational and business communities for the sake of Christian community development.
of the Transformation Levels
- Relationship Building – For the most part, the local
churches are unfamiliar with each other. Furthermore, apart
from how it may affect the success of our own mission, we don’t
really care to know what each other is doing. As the body
of Christ, we are disconnected. At the relationship level,
LTM seeks to introduce the diverse Christian groups to
each other hoping to nurture an appreciation and concern for one
another’s mission. Luncheons, prayer meetings, LTI classes
and seminars all become opportunities for us to get to learn
about each other. Loving, caring relationships should be
the core identity of the Church (John 13:35).
- Reconciliation – Relationship building leads to trust.
LTM seeks to build bridges of trust between Pastors, between
city churches and suburban churches, bridges between the rich
and the poor, etc. We believe these trust bridges will lead
us to see our diverse experiences, ethnicity’s, social status
and doctrines as strengths for the Body of Christ.
Furthermore, such bridge building brings us to a place of confidence
to confront the sin that puts walls between us and pursue
biblical reconciliation, the chief privilege of the church (II.
Cor. 5:18-19). As reconciliation becomes a priority, we
discover that our organization’s strengths and resources were
meant to be shared thereby contradicting the self-preservation
practices of the world.
- Renewal of the Church – The practice of biblical reconciliation
exposes the shortcomings of the current church culture.
Instead of 11:00 a.m. being the most segregated hour of the week,
we consider new opportunities to worship and evangelize together.
We learn to think bigger than our church organization. The
word of Jesus “…that they may be one, even as Thou, Father,
art in Me, and I in Thee, that they also be in Us; that the world
may believe that Thou didst send Me,” (John 17:21) take on new
meaning regarding the growth of the church. Gradually a
kingdom mindset provokes a desire to change the social
habits and architecture of the church that prohibit a functional
unity of the Body of Christ.
- Revitalization of the Community – When God’s people
change their way of doing church by grooming a kingdom like-mindedness
doing both evangelism and justice come to
the forefront of the Church’s witness. A passion
for both encourages a united church to have an indigenous,
compassionate presence in the community, making her true gospel
salt (Matt. 5:13). LTM understands that to the degree
the church becomes a blessing to others in our community is to
the degree the Church will become blessed (Jer. 29:7). With
the same wisdom of Nehemiah who first rebuilt the walls of Jerusalem
allowing a revival to follow, LTM seeks to serve the community
to help rebuild its “walls”. LTM seeks to facilitate
partnerships between the Church and business people inclined toward
revitalization and revival because we believe that the esteem
and behavior of a community is largely determined by its business
- Revival in the Community – Ultimately, unless a community
changes from the inside out, there has not been a visit from God.
The catalyst to this revival will be the prayers of Christians,
the aforementioned renewal of the church and the Church’s
participation in the revitalization of the city.
People in the community will have observed a spiritual authenticity
in the church that begins to break down their defenses to God’s
truth. Home after home will be moved to repent of godless
values and turn to God’s only answer to their sin, Jesus Christ.
The core evidence of such revival will be a return to worshipping
the true and living God in word and deed. Churches will
swell, homes will host prayer and Bible studies, and people will
pursue a sense of purpose and meaning that mocks the promises
of materialism and hedonism. LTM acknowledges that
God is uniquely the author of this phase of transformation yet
our task is to continue to call people to humbly pray for His
touch of our community.
- Restoration of Community – The results of revival will
be the corrections that are made regarding institutional sin within
the community. Government, economic, education, religious
and other social systems within community will come under scrutiny
of regenerate leadership. Such institutions will become
“pro church” and the righteous will be esteemed. The consensus
will be that God needs to be first in the hearts movers
and shakers of the city (Ps. 127:1). Though the Church will
remain separate from the City, a team effort will be made to see
our community pursue the model of a New Jerusalem where the main
purpose of the city is to bring its residents into fellowship
with their God.