Read Acts 2
Focus on verse 46-4
Being on the north side of fifty, I believe I can legitimately talk about the “good ol’ days” in reference to my childhood. The only hesitation I have with this is that I have to wonder what was so good about those days? Yes life was simpler without cell phones and social media, but it was also harder without all the amenities we now take for granted.
In today’s reading we read of the early days of the formation of organization we now call the church. After the receiving power in the form of the Holy Spirit, Peter preaches a humdinger of a message and about three thousand people respond to the alter call! As Luke describes the days that follow it sounds like it may have been a great time to be part of the church.
And day by day, attending the temple together and breaking bread in their homes, they received their food with glad and generous hearts, praising God and having favor with all the people. And the Lord added to their number day by day those who were being saved. (v. 46-47)
It is always more exciting to be part of a new church plant than it is to join an established plateauing congregation. I believe this is true of any organization, no matter what it’s mission might be. At the beginning everything is new and exciting. People are motivated and committed to the cause! Nothing seems impossible because energy levels are high and excitement is relatively easy to generate. Twenty years later when it is still basically the same group of people doing and saying the same thing they were doing and saying twenty years ago – the energy level is not quite as high, and the optimism and excitement has leveled off to a stubborn resolve to do whatever it takes to not give up.
Some have analyzed and labeled this as the life cycle of an organization. It is typically the same pattern that every organization follows though the time frame might vary. Birth leads to growth, which leads to maturity, which, if it is managed well might last quite a while, but it eventually gives way to stagnation, which is followed by death unless something unique happens to regenerate the cycle.
Typically the most exciting time to be part of any organization is during that first growth cycle. Perhaps that is why we call those days – the good ol’ days?