Your church is perfectly designed to get the results you’re currently getting. You’ve probably heard that said before. That means if your church is stuck it’s probably because it’s been designed to be stuck. Now I know you didn’t do that on purpose; I know you want to reach as many people with the Gospel as you possibly can. But churches get stuck because they’re designed, by intention or neglect, to be stuck.
All kinds of churches are designed to be stuck. It happens when they execute a plan that leads them to become stuck. You could say that they purposely do it on accident. They’ve planned their work and successfully worked their plan, it just hasn’t resulted in success that they thought it would; instead it results in being stuck. There are a lot of ways churches are successfully designed to get stuck…here are a few:
OK, so that’s not really a word. I just couldn’t think of another way to say it. But it doesn’t matter, it’s true. Sometimes the reason a church is stuck is because they are led by a controlling leader. Every decision must go through them, they always have the best ideas, and it always has to be their way. That always leads to things slowing down and getting stuck.
When structure begins to outpace growth, churches end up getting stuck. You may end up with a great, efficient and stable structure, but your church will only grow to the capacity of the structure you’ve created. Great structure is designed to chase growth, not the other way around.
When churches hire staff to do ministry instead of develop people and lead teams (you know the whole equip the saints to do the work of the ministry thing that the Apostle Paul talks about in his letter to the Ephesians) it leads to churches getting stuck.
Some churches are very eager to take ground, so much so that they actually over-extend themselves. It’s ironic that in their intention to take new Kingdom ground they actually can lead themselves to becoming stuck. You see, sometimes they stretch themselves too thin through taking on too much debt, running too many ministry programs, or hiring too many people that they actually prevent themselves from moving forward.
When churches confuse discipleship with education they get stuck. They may successfully educate people about the Bible, but that just leads to greater biblical knowledge, not action. If information changed people’s lives, then no one would ever smoke and the cigarette industry would go bankrupt.
Have you inadvertently designed your church to get stuck? Need a little help changing things up and getting unstuck? Contact the Unstuck Group. We’ve been helping hundreds of churches get unstuck for the last couple of years. We could help your church too.
This article originally appeared here.