A reporter from a major city newspaper drops into your regional church and records what he saw:
Your town is a third the size of Wollongong, or roughly the same as Shellharbour and Kiama combined. (The nearest major city is 370km away).
Your church has over 10,000 members and around 800 staff (which doesn’t include a school with 2,500 students, the media department making feature length films, the international music label and off site ministries)
Your church began its current direction from a ‘normal church’ when you arrived as pastor in 1996.
Your church is not part of a denomination and does not plant other churches.
When a large bushfire destroyed over 1,000 houses in your region, your church gave $1,000 to every family that lost a home, church member or not.
Your church financially supports the town where it can.
Your church doesn’t call the police for help, but calls the police to offer help.
Your church has a worldwide reach through TV, conferences, books, informal networks and music.
Due to the number of visitors to your church, an international airline now runs non stop flights to and from the closest major city.
“Joe Mathews: xxxxx church practices what it preaches – it helps address community needs The Shasta County city of 91,000 is home to a church, xxxxx, with 11,000 members and a commitment to community so intense it’s almost supernatural. No institution in our state (California) is better at engaging with its hometown”.
(Follow the blue link above for the full story, church name and interview with the senior pastor)
There are great resources for Christian Leaders out there. Two are easy to read and generally helpful
a) 5 Tell-tale signs your church is geared to insiders, not outsiders ( follow link ).
b) Pastor-to-pastor: let me pray for you ( follow link ).
c) 5 Signs your church isn’t ready for the future ( follow link )
d) 5 Essential steps in planting a church or launching a ministry ( follow link )
e) Top 10 ways churches drive away first time guests ( follow link ).
An example, from e), it’s hard to believe this is the worst church experience for first time guests:
“Having a stand up and greet one another time in the worship service. This response was my greatest surprise for two reasons. First, I was surprised how much guests are really uncomfortable during this time. Second, I was really surprised that it was the most frequent response”.
Justice is turned back, and righteousness stands far away; for truth has stumbled in the public squares, and uprightness cannot enter. Truth is lacking, and he who departs from evil makes himself a prey. The Lord saw it, and it displeased him that there was no justice. He saw that there was no man, and wondered that there was no one to intercede… [Isaiah 59:14-16a]
Every Friday Morning Prayer Breakfasts 7.00 am. It’s a great time of prayer, fellowship and Godly start to the day. Meets at the offices of Warwick Marsh, Dads4Kids, behind Central Rd shops, through KFC car park Unanderra.
Pray with, and for, other Christian leaders in your area.