Thursday, July 26, 2012
Since we're rethinking the church we should start with why and how we do it! We need a strategy for why we're trying to reach people so that we'll know how to do it. It's been my experience in most all churches that I've served in that people are passionate, love Jesus, but completely lost on exactly what they should be doing. This may sounds weird or even harsh, but it's easy to fall into this trap when all our ministries are silos. We go from day to day carrying out our ministry without an overarching purpose for our churches. So the answer is clear; we need a Strategy. My wife and I have been in ministry for 12 years and we've heard a few people talk about this, but with few answers. Recently we went to the Orange Conference. This was amazing and helped with an answer. We need to talk about what the purpose of the church is, get everyone on the same page, and monitor each other to make sure we're on purpose. Does this get to happen in most churches...sadly no! I know this seems really easy, but it's extremely hard. It'll involve some hard conversations. It involves listening to others and allowing others to have some say so in your ministry. What really...in your ministry
! Yes, this is the ministry of the church. This isn't ours, it's God's. Let other people in!
Ok well if I haven't lost you yet, then that's good. It means you want things to change and you want your church to be more. Our churches need to keep God's life changing message the same and change our methods regularly. We need to do whatever it takes to reach those without Christ. This means we need a strategy.
I'd start with figuring out why you do what you do. Start with your main service; why do you have that service. It could be, for example: To show church is different, to reach the lost, for Christians, or simply to get people to know more about your church. Whatever it is, do it amazing. We've spent to much time being sub-par Christians and people are noticing. Time to stand up and be a Christ follower!
After you've identified what you want your church to be about and what your main entry point is about, move on to what you want people to be. Do you want them to be disciples followers, do you want them to know more about the bible, have a quiet time, what do you want.
Now you've got a goal, but it's to far from your starting point. You can't make that jump no matter how hard you try. You need stepping stones in the middle to get you there. So decide on steps you need to get to the goal. Maybe it's programs, maybe it's just creating some way to disciple people, or maybe it's just to make a small group for different types of people. If it gets your people closer to your goal, does not violate scripture, then let's go for it!
So your strategy is easy. You figure out a purpose, find a starting point, decide on the goal or the end point, now just get all those in between steps you need to get to your goal. Now go change your methods and reach more people. We live in a culture that expects awesome, and how is there anything more awesome than God's amazing message through His church.
God Rocks, JW