- Why Churches Fail, 1994-1996, 1998- 2006, ongoing
- Pastors Personal Lives, 1992-2007, ongoing
- Bible Literacy, 1978-1987, 1997-1999, 2004-present
- Church Trends, 1978-1982, 1990-2000, ongoing
- Relevance and of Leadership Training as Compared to Actuality of practice, 1986-1998
- Biblical Stewardship verses Postmodern Thinking, 2001-2004
- Fruit of the Spirit as a Biblical Mandate verses Actual Practice in American Churches 2008- ongoing
(We are trying to upload our research as fast as possible, please be patient, this is an enormous task) This is what we have loaded thus far:
· The principle focus of FASICLD for the last 15 plus years is seeking why so many churches are failing: Why Churches Fail
· Understanding the impact of the Bible on history and its relevance for our lives: Bible Research
· Stewardship Research Project: Stewardship Findings
· Exegetical Eschatology Research Project: Biblical Eschatology
· Bible Literacy Research Project: Bible Research
What is going on with today's "good" churches?
They devoted themselves to the apostles' teaching and to the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer. Everyone was filled with awe, and many wonders and miraculous signs were done by the apostles. All the believers were together and had everything in common. Selling their possessions and goods, they gave to anyone as he had need. Every day they continued to meet together in the temple courts. They broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts, praising God and enjoying the favor of all the people. And the Lord added to their number daily those who were being saved. Acts 2:42-47
Research on the Happenings in Pastors' Personal and Church Lives.
Since first studying pastors in the late 80's, we are seeing significant shifts in the last 20 years on how pastors view their calling and how churches treat them.
PDF Report with graphs and insights:
We are called to spiritual growth—that is, the formation of the investment of faith Christ gives us that we give back to Him in dividends.
In Scripture we are given a call to our spiritual formation; and to do so, we must think, study, and ponder how His principles are to affect and impact us as He is Christ the Lord.
We have a call to make sure our hearts are lined up with His. When they are Christ blesses us and our church.
As ministers, pastors, priests church leaders or seminarians, we are called to know and grow in Christ first and foremost before we seek to lead others to Him!
Research in prayer has shown that churches who spent from one-fourth (1/4) to one-third (1/3) of their meeting time in prayer were far more efficient, organized, and prompt in those meetings. In fact, meeting times were cut from thirty-three percent (33%) to fifty-two percent (52%) when prayer became the prime focus. A three (3) hour meeting became an hour and forty-five minute meeting (1: 45) for one church and that was the median. People, ministers, chair leaders, and committee members were more focused on issues and planned agendas, less self talk and rambling on occurred, and more unity, listening, and cohesiveness were the result. Churches that implemented more prayer have seen significant impact in not only the meetings but in the project with which the meeting was associated;, adding prayer to the worship meeting impacted how worship in the church was done, experienced, and felt by participants. In contrast, the churches that did not spend significant time in prayer in their meetings felt it was a waste of church/time resources and felt that people should pray on their own before meetings rather than waste meeting time with prayer! Some reported that prayer was a distraction and could hinder others from joining the committee. In addition the "prayer centered" churches were the ones growing in faith and numbers. The "pray-less" groups were either stagnate or in a recession of spiritual and numerical growth (941 churches surveyed in 1993, and retested with 498 different churches in 2003 in addition to ongoing in-depth, observational, and interview-based inquiries). See what God has to say in Acts 1:14 and 4:23-31.
Our research compared with others
Most research organizations do a great job surveying the thoughts and trends of today's Church. We however, seek root causes and motivations, real effectual results from long term studies, interviews as well as detailed surveys.
For instance, in researching others' data, such as Barna.org, it seems that the faith of Americans continues to move more to conservative and evangelical churches and being "born again." This has risen from 31% to 45% since the early 1980's. Our research concurs.
Barna, Gallup and others' research also has shown that the American Church's spiritual activities, such as church attendance, Bible reading, and small group participation, have risen significantly or have stayed the same. Our research has shown a drop in these areas. Why the deviation? Perhaps the divergence comes from whom we surveyed; Barna focused on the Church as a whole including mainline churches whereas we primarily focused on the Conservative and Reformed Movements. Thus, liberalism is on the increase in mainline denominations but also, to a significant portion, is spiritual formation in small groups actively seeking spiritual significance for one's life, but not necessarily in the classic reformational teachings of Bible and doctrine and spiritual passion for Jesus as Lord.
Suggestions to overcome theses spiritual discrepancies
Go to Christ! Face Him and partake of Him! Read and teach the Book of Ephesians verse by verse! Teach it both from the pulpit and in the church's small groups and take it slow; spend a year on it. Commit to prayer and offer classes and helps to further both the leader and people in their spiritual lives and intimacy with God. See www.discipleshiptools.org or any of the Bible studies at www.intothyword.org or www.withtheword.org and turn them into sermons. For more helps on this, well…this is what our website is for!
For this very reason, make every effort to add to your faith goodness; and to goodness, knowledge; and to knowledge, self-control; and to self-control, perseverance; and to perseverance, godliness; and to godliness, brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness, love. For if you possess these qualities in increasing measure, they will keep you from being ineffective and unproductive in your knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. But if anyone does not have them, he is nearsighted and blind, and has forgotten that he has been cleansed from his past sins. 2 Peter 1:5-9
Stay tuned as we have over thirty years of files to go through, retype into the computer, and then upload to this site.