Sometimes I think we judge the success of our churches with how much stuff is happening and how many people come to the stuff. I like it when we have stuff and I like it when people come to the stuff, but I want to evaluate our success from a different grid.
My question for you is this – what does church provide for you that is helping transform you into a more committed follower of Jesus? What do you take away from the Sunday worship gatherings? Has your participation in a small group caused you to grow, remain stagnant or caused you spiritual harm? What resources could the church provide that would equip you, your family and your friends to be more mature disciples?
These are dangerous questions for church leaders to ask because the results could cause major changes to programs that are now considered sacred cows. Are we willing to make the painful changes if it means better results for the people we are leading? Could the results mean a major shift of the ministry budget? Could the results mean some staff is not needed while more staff is needed in areas that have been ignored?
The team here at New Life is about to ask these questions. I am bracing myself for the answers. We will not know the results for a few months because we want to be thorough but I can guarantee that everything is on the table for discussion. Sometimes putting a dent in the universe requires honest evaluation and courageous change.
We may also find that we are doing better than we think. It is possible we have strategically positioned ourselves to produce disciples and not many things need to change. That would be great, but what would be better is a healthy streamlined church that is operating in its calling with full forward momentum. Stay tuned!