Author Topic: Am I Responsible for Church Growth?  (Read 1486 times)

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Offline Barry

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Am I Responsible for Church Growth?
« on: Thu Apr 03, 2014 - 08:03:43 »
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Am I Responsible for Church Growth?
« on: Thu Apr 03, 2014 - 08:03:43 »

Offline Cally

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Re: Am I Responsible for Church Growth?
« Reply #1 on: Thu Apr 17, 2014 - 13:09:50 »
I feel so bad for "pastors." These guys punish themselves. :(

Pastors really need to figure out how to employ its members like in Bible times, so that the burden of the Body is a joint-effort. Jesus wasn't afraid of only attracting small numbers of people, and nations rejecting him.

Offline Rev. C E Isom

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Re: Am I Responsible for Church Growth?
« Reply #2 on: Tue Aug 30, 2016 - 17:50:57 »
God is not served because we have more then others but by using every moment to show them how by doing our work which is the only thing god wants from us. Once you have read his word you'll find that most of the World's churches serve in oppositon to what the word teaches . So increase our family rolls they belong to God and we see that even if get's hard you keep in mind you serve God's will love is always looking to help others . So be full of joy Our time is short gain solace that it will end setting us free to go to live in home never to see pain again.

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Re: Am I Responsible for Church Growth?
« Reply #2 on: Tue Aug 30, 2016 - 17:50:57 »

Offline SHINY4UJESUS

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Re: Am I Responsible for Church Growth?
« Reply #3 on: Mon Oct 10, 2016 - 23:09:35 »
1 Corinthians 3:6(NIV)
"6 I planted the seed, Apollos watered it, but God has been making it grow."

   At times it can be easy to skip past step one and two here and simply rely on step three. While it is definitely in God's hands to dictate the outcome; there are things we can do to put ourselves in a better position to receive a return on investment. Leadership does hold some responsibility in the growth, maintenance and general facilitation of its membership; yet, I would advise caution here so as not to overly focus on one's actions or to measure the return based on what is immediately apparent. This particular item has many potential pitfalls in and of itself unfortunately. One must be careful not to "sheep steal," in efforts to boost attendance, membership and general growth. One must not compromise the integrity of the Word of God, individual mission/vision/focus of particular Body in question. One must not overextend resources in a "low-yield," venture. One must not limit God and the potential for growth by "confining God to a box," or specific set of pre-qualifying factors/standards. These are just a few of many areas of concern.
    I would simply offer a few suggestions to plant the seeds of growth; you may use any, all or none as you feel God would lead.

1). Make use of low-cost/high-return platforms; such as web-based platform. It costs very little to establish a website if you do not currently have one; and there are even sites that walk you through step-by-step website creation. They make it simple, user friendly, and reasonably customizeable. There are even a few who offer this completely free of charge, even providing the broadband access on global scale. Once one has a website running, it is cost free (presuming one has the equipment necessary,) to present weekly sermons, advertise upcoming events, provide access to services and resources, deliver educational material, and much more. This allows a membership/participation from a virtually unlimited base of believers and non believers alike, in a cost free format for them, with the added bonus of convenience. Quite often, what begins as folks watching weekly sermons online; eventually can result in their physical attendance and membership moving forward.

2). Maximize the opportunities within your community. This is less applicable in very small churches that are in very rural areas, but can still be of some benefit; the options are just more limited. There are always charities, non profit organizations, and humanitarian groups providing services and facilitating events in most areas; throughout the year. If these organizations/events/services are in alignment with the Church's tenets, mission, vision, and scriptural integrity; we do well to reach out and seek to participate. (IE, serving at local homeless shelters, volunteering at food drives, participating in major events such as Convoy of Hope, Habitats for Humanity, Red Cross, Salvation Army, etc.) Quite often these organizations are very welcome to added volunteers, and it will give leadership and members "hands-on," opportunity to showcase the values, messages, and spiritual principles found in their church. Often those both receiving your help, and people within the confines of the organization will be ministered to simply by your acts of love and kindness; causing them to be interested and intrigued about your church. You need not actively promote or endorse your church in these events for two basic reasons: A) Often the organization hosting the event will "plug," each church/volunteer organization in appreciation of the assistance. B) Actions speak for themselves. Simply by reflecting the character of Christ; those who are broken will be drawn to the light and love on display; often prompting their proactive curiosity towards your church or ministry.

3). Make use of the flock itself! Present the need for growth to the congregation. Ask for folks to be willing to post flyers, bulletins, or calendars at their places of work, recreation, educational institutions, etc. (Wherever these things are legally and structurally allowed mind you.) Often, most business owners have little issue allowing flyers or bulletins from non profit entities such as churches to be placed in their establishments, and even some Christ based educational institutions promote the advertising of Churches wholeheartedly in attempt to encourage their students to be active and present in the Body.

4). Do not discount the value of Jail/Prison Ministry. Now I know that some would be very critical of this approach, but I would remind you of Jesus' willingness to interact with "sinners," and the undesirable elements in society. These are the souls whom are in greatest need of a proper spiritual foundation, a message of love and hope, and deliverance from a life enslaved to sin. These are the people who have been abandoned by every other segment of society, even disowned by family, and often have nobody "in their corner," so to speak. This my friends, is the ideal opportunity to not only be fruitfully obedient to our calling in sharing the message of Jesus Christ; but to nurture growth from a vastly ignored field.
Since these folks have nobody who cares anymore, nobody who will visit them, show them kindness, grant them forgiveness...by reaching out to them you will find that many are not only willing and receptive; but they will also be fiercely loyal, because you have been the only one to reflect true compassion and kindness in spite of their failings. Furthermore, once they are mature and stable in their faith; these are believers who will not be afraid to reach out to those who seem most given to sin, they will not be afraid of the rough neighborhoods or tough street thugs. They will boldly witness in areas the "average," believer may be hesitant or unwilling to venture. I say again, do not discount the value of a jail/prison ministry!

     These are just a few possible ways to help nurture growth, but they are not all the options. It is up to each congregation and its leadership to determine what approach is best. In the end, it is not about the return; but in knowing you have invested the time and effort to plant the seeds, water the seeds, so that God can provide exponential growth! May Father grant clarity in these matters.  Thanks and God Bless.

Offline lesterwilliams

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Re: Am I Responsible for Church Growth?
« Reply #4 on: Mon Nov 07, 2016 - 12:28:11 »
Early in my ministry we had a sr pastor that was numbers driven.  The ministry failed. We called a pastor, Dr Phil Levin, and he taught us that we grow when we are spiritually mature. He always said a church grows from the inside-out.  In the staff meetings we never spoke about attendance with him.  Not that we did not want to grow but we were focused on growing in faith and service and the numbers came along.  During my time with this pastor we rebuilt from a failing ministry to over 200 in attendance. The sad thing is that when he left we got some of the old attitudes back and the ministry crashed like the 1920's stock market .  My point is that if we follow the standard set by dr Levin, a ministry will grow.  Focus on the important thing. Focus upon spiritual maturity.

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Re: Am I Responsible for Church Growth?
« Reply #4 on: Mon Nov 07, 2016 - 12:28:11 »



Offline Tertullian

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Re: Am I Responsible for Church Growth?
« Reply #5 on: Mon Nov 07, 2016 - 12:49:03 »
Every business in town is worried about customer growth.

I think the only message of this video is for pastors not to let it get to them too much when their efforts to grow the church fail.

The truth is, every new church that opens up in town means other church must die.  Your growth comes at the expense of other churches.  (but... but... there's all those unchurched people... whatever you wan to tell yourself)

Offline SwordAndSpirit

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Re: Am I Responsible for Church Growth?
« Reply #6 on: Mon Jun 19, 2017 - 08:07:49 »
Early in my ministry we had a sr pastor that was numbers driven.  The ministry failed. We called a pastor, Dr Phil Levin, and he taught us that we grow when we are spiritually mature. He always said a church grows from the inside-out.  In the staff meetings we never spoke about attendance with him.  Not that we did not want to grow but we were focused on growing in faith and service and the numbers came along.  During my time with this pastor we rebuilt from a failing ministry to over 200 in attendance. The sad thing is that when he left we got some of the old attitudes back and the ministry crashed like the 1920's stock market .  My point is that if we follow the standard set by dr Levin, a ministry will grow.  Focus on the important thing. Focus upon spiritual maturity.

I really like what you wrote and couldn't agree more.

 My wife just left a very small church (20 members) that has not seen any real growth in numbers in years. This church does not seem to focus on spiritual maturity and one extended family runs the inner workings of this church which does not allow for new members to use their spiritual gifts.

The pastor runs it like a business and has final say on all matters. My wife felt called by God to lead the youth group. Instead, the pastor told her she needs a background check and fingerprint. Currently a young mother leads a group of older kids and a 14 year old girl leads the younger children. There are only 2 male members so a 10 year old boy passes the collection plate.

My wife left because their is no area of growth for her there.

Offline ShawnV

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Re: Am I Responsible for Church Growth?
« Reply #7 on: Wed Jul 12, 2017 - 09:10:57 »
I think one of the important things taken from this video is when he spoke about coming back from a conference and saying to yourself "if we only had this" or "implement that we'd see growth". Change can be a good thing but it can also be a bad thing if it's not genuine. If we're making changes in our churches just to make changes and add a new worship style to hopefully capture a different "target" group and Christ is not in it, it will fail.

I think the thing to remember as a church is to be genuine, be filled with the Holy Spirit, be in love with God, follow His ways and strive to be Christ like. If we strive to be Disciples of Christ, then those that walk through our doors will know our worship is genuine and spirit filled and will want to be a part of what you have going on. I've walked into churches both large and small and can tell instantly whether the spirit is alive or missing. It's those churches that were alive with the Holy Spirit that I didn't want to leave.

As a pastor of course you want church growth, but to be successful in God's plan we have to be careful what type of growth we focus on. If we're only focused on growth in numbers we will fail in what God has called us to do. We are called to grow and make Disciples of Christ. I've heard well respected pastors say it this way, "Sheep bring sheep. Pastor's lead sheep." We are all minister's for Christ. Through our baptism we are all commissioned into ministry. So the growth of the church isn't just on the pastor.