Rick Warren, in a recent REV magazine article offered five (5) growth inhibitors which local churches and pastors must address. See if any of these are causing your church problems …
- Not bringing friends to church – Rick says while we pray, ask, motivate and encourage, our people are not generally bringing unsaved friends to church because they have a mindset that while the service meet a need in “their” life, it might not be accepted or comfortable for their unsaved friends. What to do? Rick says plan at least one service a week directly targeted at the unchurched.
- Fearing that growth with ruin the fellowship – In this regard, the fear that as the church grows must be addressed by creating “smaller” groups which will enable greater connections and reduce the fear of disconnect.
- Clinging rigidly to traditions – Rick offers that we should start viewing traditions as some kind of marker of past success. The reason the tradition exists is that it was once successful. What to do? Annually review the methods and practices of the church to determine if they still work or need revision.
- Being program oriented rather than process oriented – A host of programs is not valuable to a church unless it accomplishes some agreed upon goal. How do we know if our people are growing in Christ? Saddleback is known for the baseball diamond which offers the church, its leadership and the disciple the model to track progress. Any method can work as long as there is a way to measure progress.
- Emphasizing meetings rather than ministry – You cannot measure the health of a church if attendance is the primary tool of determining health and success. If so, then your church is meeting oriented. Encourage participation and involvement in ministries which meet community needs and enable the believer to be engaged in faith pursuits.
Do any of these have resonance with your church?
[from forwardleadership.org by billisaacs]