A few days ago, I met a pastor of a church of 20,000 or so people in Delhi India. His congregats meet in home churches – 500 of them.
Things started taking off about 15 years ago when a boy with a bad skin condition asked for prayer. The next day he was healed. Word spread and the church began to grow at an exponential rate.
The pastor said, "It's not the miracles that attract the people; it's the changed lives."
I asked him how he disciples his leaders.
"They have to pray and read the Bible at least an hour and a half a day. We ask them to read 13 chapters of the Bible each day. We live in a society that worships many different gods. We have to immerse ourselves in God's thoughts to resist the enemy."
I thought, "Isn't that a little extreme?"
And then I realized, "I need to look at their fruit rather than at my preconceptions of what's normal."
If the fruit of such spiritual discipline is a church that is growing by leaps and bounds with people getting healed and set free from the things that enslave them, shouldn't I look at that?
Reflecting on my practice of Bible reading, I realized that I've gone soft. I tend to not read broadly and sometimes not at all. I need to look at those aspects of my faith that have been adversely impacted by culture and make adjustments from time to time.
How about you? How has culture impacted your faith? What changes do you want to make that might look counter-culture?