Archives For growth

Many times churches get this idea that being busy and starting more things is the same as being a success.  It is easy to think that the more ministries you start, the better the church must be doing.  But here is the deal, more things going on is NOT the goal.  The goal should be to see lives changed.  You could be a church of 50 or 500, and have 25 different ministries, but if it is not producing life change in people, you are not being effective or successful.  Here are a few more thoughts:

  • If the ministries you are doing now are not producing any life change in people, you need to get rid of it.
  • If starting a new ministry means another job for an already stressed out, overloaded staff member, you probably do not need it.
  • If your idea of growth is doing something else, and not spiritual maturity in people, you likely do not need to do anything else.
  • If you think that keeping your people busy is more important than letting them get out into the world to make a difference and have influence, you do not need another ministry.
  • If you have to get up and beg people to attend a ministry event every time you have it, you do not need it because it must not be producing life change in people, or they would come.
  • If you have to guilt people into doing something, you do not need to do it.  It obviously is not an effective means to life change for your people.
  • Just because the church down the street does it, does not mean you need to do it.
  • Just because you have always done it, does not mean you should still be doing it.

So, what are your thoughts?  Do you think less is more or more is more?

Divine Detour

Jason Petermann  —  January 19, 2010 — 1 Comment

Ok, I promise, this is the last post on Mark Batterson’s Wild Goose Chase.  God is just so good to encourage and motivate with the right words at the right time in your journey, and this was too good not to post.  Hopefully is can be an encouragement to someone else as it was to me…

“Tired of divine delays?  Feel like your life is a divine detour?  Let me remind you of three things: (1) The longer you have to wait, the more you will appreciate; (2) sometimes the most spiritual thing you can do is hang in there; and (3) a sense of humor can get you through just about anything.  And one more thing, no matter how crazy the Wild Goose chase gets, don’t forget to enjoy the journey!”

Sure, it is hard to enjoy every aspect of the journey.  There are times when you will feel mistreated, unloved and taken advantage of.  But here is the deal, it is in those times, the times that are tough, that we are able to grow closer to God.  The detour that has appeared in your life is not a surprise to God.  He has already been there, ahead of you, to plan everything as He wants.  We just need to change our perspective, and look at it as a divine detour that will ultimately lead us to be who God wants us to be.

Speaking of the way we do church, Mark Batterson (in Wild Goose Chase) says:

“…I’m afraid we’ve turned church into a spectator sport.  Too many of us are content with letting a spiritual leader seek God for us.  Like the Israelites, we want Moses to climb the mountain for us.  After all, it is much easier to let someone else pray for us or study for us.  So the church unintentionally fosters a subtle form of spiritual codependency.”

This is why it is so important for the church to encourage and equip people to be in the Word for themselves.  It is also important for people to know that the church can provide opportunities for growth and equipping, but it is still up to the individual believer to take next steps in his relationship with God.  The church cannot make anyone do that, and the church is not responsible to do that.

What do you think?  Has the church made people spiritually codependent?