I Don’t Want Churches To Be Small; I Want Small Churches To Be Great
There are three truths we must acknowledge if we want small churches to be great

Small churches are different.

When I learn about pastoring from a megachurch pastor, I have to leave a lot on the cutting room floor. Typically, about one-third of what they say applies to me and my situation. Sometimes less.

So where do we get help for the rest of it? Small church leaders need to talk to each other.

I need to hear from pastors of other small churches that are doing great work for the kingdom of God. Then, I need to turn around and share what I’ve learned.

Truth #3: Some Great Churches Stay Small

This is a big truth that always receives a lot of negative feedback. So before you warm up your typing fingers to tell me “all healthy things grow!”, please realize that I know and agree with that truth wholeheartedly. All healthy things grow. Yes. Indisputably.

Here’s how I addressed the issue of inevitable growth in my book, The Grasshopper Myth:

Yes, all healthy things grow. But growth is never as simple as older equals taller or healthy equals bigger. A pea will never be the size of a pumpkin and a rose won’t ever reach the height of a redwood no matter how much you water them, fertilize them or teach them redwood growth principles. It’s just not in their nature. All healthy, living things reach their optimal size at maturity, then they grow in different ways from that point on.

What if that principle applied to churches? I have come to believe it does. If the church is one body with many parts, isn’t it possible, even likely, that the body of Christ needs churches of all sizes?

I am not a failure if my church reaches its optimal stage of maturity, then starts growing in ways other than butts in seats for weekend services.

For a longer explanation of this, check out my previous post “The Myth of Inevitable Church Growth”, which is also in the Summer 2015 issue of Leadership Journal.

Welcome To the Pivot Blog - A No-Excuse Zone

We may not all see numerical growth in the church we pastor. But that is never an excuse. Pivot is now and will always be a no-excuse zone.

We are all called to participate in the growth of the church. No matter what size our congregation may be.

In fact, according to Neil Cole, in Is Bigger Really Better? The Statistics Actually Say "No"!, healthy small churches multiply faster than big churches. That's why, in locations around the world where the church is growing as a percentage of the population, individual congregations tend to be even smaller.

Being small is not an excuse to do church poorly.

Being small is not an excuse to do church poorly.

Small churches can be great. Small churches must be great. Because great small churches can change the world.

Are you ready for your church to be great?

You don’t need to wait. Greatness can start today.

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The views of the blogger do not necessarily reflect those of Christianity Today.

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