SIT 2019 - Wednesday "How to Discover and Use What Your Church Does Well"

primary difference between two types of small churches

50 people- as a pastor you can be there for everyone

150 people- you are pushed more to equip others; you can be main provider of ministry but you have to have trained others

most of us are “chaplain-ing” (does ministry for people & bring ministry to people) our churches and not “pastoring” (equip people to do work of ministry) our churches.

recommended book: “Dirt Matters” Jim Powell

Pastor in rural Indiana who had an ‘ah-ha’ moment “We do funeral receptions well!” He told the funeral director that they would host funeral receptions for anyone who died in their town. As a result, they touched the lives of everyone in that town/county and grew. “Church growth through funeral receptions”

Do what you know to do, pay attention to what works, and why

After you discover what your church does well, do it on purpose

Front-load the value: feature what you do well

The smaller your church is, the more singular your focus needs to be

Use the “closet rule” for ministries: Don’t add a new one until you’ve dropped an old one

What does your church do well, that you would like to do more of?

What does your church do poorly, that you would like to do less of?

Ask: “If our church wasn’t already doing this, would we start doing it?”

after every event, we do a major assessment - what worked? what didn’t?

can a church do senior ministry primarily? you have to be thinking at least the decade out; consider following groups like AARP to see how they keep on the cutting edge of senior ministry

We have to stop being driven by our structures, programs and habits

We don’t need ‘cool’ churches. We need churches that are appropriate for our context.

Move out of a destination mindset and into a process orientation

destination mindset- we arrived at that destination & we stayed there (we got the building, we’ve bolted pews, and the pulpit won’t be moved until the last member of the family that donated the pulpit has died) now we can ‘rest’ but then we lose touch with the neighborhood

Most unhealthy churches look like what their neighborhood used to look like at the time when the church was founded or at the time when the last great pastor was there.

process orientation- we are going to change things but we will explain why & have a process for it.

Churches can handle change, but they don’t like to be surprised

The Sweet Spot: God, the church and the pastor’s hearts meet

The Default: God and the pastor, but not the church

The Listening Place: God and the church, but not the pastor

The Danger Zone: The Church and the pastor, but not God

Do not mistake the absence of conflict for the presence of God.

It’s OK for a pastor’s vision to be helping people fulfill their vision.