Yes, there are some people that quickly pick up on the lack of vision and leave the church to find another more vibrant church, but how many people keep coming back week after week secretly hoping things will get better? Hoping and praying that the pastor will get a word from God, lead with passion, conviction and purpose. I wonder how many gifted, capable, passionate lay leaders are sitting untapped in congregations around the country. I wonder.Wow. I have to say that I have been one of those leaders at times over the years. My tendency has tended to side with the ‘hold out hope and try to make positive change wherever/however possible’ side of things. Unfortunately, I’ve seen a lot of people that couldn’t stick it out. And that’s ok, I guess. That makes Greg’s words ring true with me. Many great leaders won’t wait around for a vision to take shape. And when their leader shows no tendency toward any kind of tangible vision, they move on. And understandably so. There have been many times I’ve questioned my strategies and feelings in this area. What do you think? Is it better to stick around and try to affect change; or better to move on and join a team where vision and the ability to move forward is easier? via Greg Atkinson.
Click To TweetGreg Atkinson wrote something that caught my eye this morning. What do you think?
Click To TweetAccording to Dan Rockwell a.k.a. “The Leadership Freak”, passion fuels boldness. Leaders with passion, Dan says, act boldly, serve freely, and commit willingly. But many people I’ve met in ministry lack true passion. Sure… they were passionate when they started in ministry; but now find themselves in a situation that sucks. Dan describes the passionless as… keep reading
5 Reasons People Aren’t Giving Faithfully To Your Church. What do you think are the main reasons people aren’t giving consistently to YOUR church? ToddCasey Graham thinks that there are 5 key reasons people aren’t giving as faithfully or consistently to your church as you want them to: 1. People don’t feel NEEDED At one time, I remember church funding being ALL about need! The “weekly need” was published in the bulletin and the goal was to meet the weekly need. I believe we have swung the pendulum too far away from this. We don’t want to be “that” church so we try to make our churches look like everything is professional and “done”. People park the cars in the parking lot, we have nice signs, and have great children’s workers. We are trained to create a culture where everything feels “done” and people feel welcomed more than needed. 2. People don’t understand I truly believe if people just had a clear picture of where the church is headed, you could solve most of your funding issues. People need VISION and CLARITY about the future more than we think they do. People’s giving rarely increases unless you give them something to stretch for. We find that when a church has 3-4 objectives they want to accomplish through their operational budget and they highlight them to the congregation and make a SPECIFIC ask, people move their giving! Ask this question: 3. People feel like the church wants something from them, not for them I have found that pastors think they are closer to their people than they really are. You know who I learn the most from when meeting with staff teams? The spouses. The spouses that are not on staff give me more insight into the relational credibility of the senior leadership more than the staff team. Here is the deal; most of the time we stay quiet about money until we need some. This is why you have to create RELATIONAL EQUITY with your donors each day, week, month and year. 4. People aren’t educated I have met with over 1,000 people in a 1-on-1 financial coaching environment. I never met with one person that was tithing. Most people would say to me, “We can’t tithe.” About 90 minutes later they would walk out of the meeting knowing they COULD tithe, but they are choosing not to. In reality they are choosing five magazine subscriptions over giving to God. That is just reality. 5. People don’t know what is expected It is so funny that we want to reach all these lost people, but we rarely tell them what the Bible says about giving. It is 100% expected of us to give to God & be generous. How are you helping people understand the theology of giving and all the Bible has to say about it? When people know what is expected, they will often times meet that expectation. // Read more from Casey here…
“What I Wish Someone Had Told Me:” Pastors of the 100 Fastest Growing Churches Share on Vision and Alignment – Will Mancini. What do YOU wish someone would have told you about ministry 10 years ago? ToddWill Mancini writes: Every year, Outreach Magazine provides a profile of the 100 Fastest-growing churches in the country. This year, they had a few interview spots entitled, “What I wish someone told me.” What really struck me are the common threads on vision and alignment. Look for how these pastors discuss clarity and unique calling. The big themes are as follows: Radical emphasis on mission and vision (including values and strategy) Willingness to “let people go” who don’t align with the vision Commitment to stop programs and cut ministry not aligned with the vision Now, listen to their own words form the 2012 special issue. Luke Barnett (@LWBarnett), Phoenix First Assembly of God (12th Fastest-growing) At first you think the mobilizing leadership happens naturally, like leaders and volunteers and magically appear because you have a great idea, but that’s not so. Over time you learn that you have to be intentional in mobilizing and recruiting leaders and you have to develop the leaders that have bought into the vision and feel appreciated. John Beukema (@John Beukema), King Street Church (39th Fastest-growing) Some people will never leave no matter what happens and some people will leave no matter what happens. Since that has been true, I wish I had been told how pitiful and unproductive it is to worry over who you retain and who you don’t. Just do the right things, be clear on your mission, and don’t get emotionally invested in who stays or goes. David Brown (@DavidBrown_Ave), The Avenue Church (44th Fast-growing) People do not have trouble committing to something. Look around at the ball fields and cheerleading meets. The church has been slow at giving them something worth committing to be in. When leaders are passionate about the vision God has given the local church and begin to share that vision people will follow. // Read more here:
- Imagination Stage– This is the fun stage where you get to think outside the box and dream about possibilities. Typically you’re focused on solving a problem that is close to your heart and praying through ways God wants to use you to make a difference.
- Preparation Stage – This is the hard work of putting together the timelines, budget, priorities and goals of the vision. Vision is seeing tomorrows possibilities today, but it’s not enough just to see it, you have to design a blueprint in order to minimize frustrations along the way.
- Execution Stage – This is where the vision train gets to leave the station. Teams are deployed and people move into action to make things happen. Day by day you get to see the framework of the vision being put together.
- I’m going to cast such a compelling vision for the power of the local church that the vision would draw their hearts back to the local church.
- I’m going to celebrate and embrace whatever they are doing to make a difference.
Read more from Tim here. A couple of other things he’s written that I think you should check out are: Tips for Church Communications Leaders 6 Ways to Follow Up with First Time GuestsThe premise: No one cares what you’re doing until they understand why you’re doing it. As church leaders, it is vitally important to communicate the WHY if we expect/want people to follow our leadership. Tim Peters offers three ways to communicate the WHY of what you’re trying to accomplish #1 – Communicate with Consistency Vision leaks. You must constantly keep the vision, the WHY, in front of the people you are leading. Every announcement, event, message – everything – must be an opportunity to communicate the WHY. #2 – Communicate with Urgency It’s the vision. It matters. It’s imperative. It’s urgent. It’s the WHY. If it’s not important enough to be urgent, it’s not important. #3 – Communicate with a Call to Action The WHY is what drives us to do something. If your church mission is to love God and love others, that’s the “what.” If you stand before your church and constantly communicate the what, people will understand they are supposed to love God and love others. And maybe you even communicate when and how. But if you aren’t communicating in such a way that it DRIVES people to act, then you aren’t communicating the WHY. Why does the why matter in the church? It matters because eternity is at stake. Great stuff to keep in mind as you prepare to communicate the WHY this weekend (and during the week for that matter).