"Many of my people are too busy to devote themselves to outreach," said my pastor friend Mark. "It's cramping our plans to reach the neighborhood."
Mark is like a greyhound on a taut leash, straining against the collar, nails scratching the pavement. Though his church on the southwest side of Chicago is strong and growing, he is frustrated. He wants to reach thousands; his church touches only a fraction of them. He has plans and programs to bring many to faith in Christ, if he can just mobilize his own people to the maximum.
Mark isn't the only one with collar burn. Ask most pastors about their church outreach, and you'll likely hear, "I wish we were doing more."
One of the clearest results of the latest LEADERSHIP survey on evangelism documents this frustration: 84 percent of church leaders said they are discontent with their congregation's commitment to evangelism.
"You can't really get mad at your people, though," said one pastor. "Most of them are preoccupied with good or necessary things, ...1