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Gifts and Growth

A case study

In Wayne Pohl's first church, a mission congregation in suburban Grand Rapids, Michigan, he decided every one of his leaders had to be an evangelist. After all, how could the congregation grow if the church board didn't set the pace? Although most of the men participated willingly, one good administrator threw up every Thursday night before making his evangelism calls. "You'll get over it," Pohl assured him. "You just have to get out and do it." But he didn't get over it, and a gifted leader was lost.

Now after years in the pastorate, Pohl easily could author a bestseller on 1001 Church Programs That Sounded Good But Failed. He was, for instance, the sole creator and developer of "My Brother's Keeper," a program to get active church members to shepherd inactive ones. Many of the active members, however, were reticent, and to grab, encourage, and build up another brother or sister seemed an insurmountable task. After the program fell flat, Pohl seriously questioned the dedication and even ...

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