Change what you can.
If you have determined there are issues that need to be addressed, start by changing what you can within your own sphere of influence. For instance, if you are the children’s ministry director and you have detected a culture of gossip within your church, you can start changing the overall organizational culture by helping the leaders within your ministry understand―and teach―what gossip is, why it is detrimental, and how to handle it within your ministry. The outward ripple effects from your own domain can be very powerful and should not be underestimated.
Talk with organizational influencers.
Beyond your own sphere of influence, raise the issue with others possessing credibility in the church. Start with those with whom you have the closest working relationships, asking for their help in shaping their own areas of influence. If you decide it is necessary to take your concerns to those at the top of the organizational chart, be sure you have spent adequate time in preparation and prayer. Remember: your role is to be faithful to what God has called you to communicate, and you cannot control the other party’s response. Be prepared with your own contingency plans depending on the results of your conversations.
Note that the higher you address your concerns, the more crucial it is for you to have completed a thorough analysis and emotional work, so as not to be viewed as a discreditable outlier. Whenever possible, have documentation (i.e., data detailing facts, dates, and trends, organizational policies, written constitution and core values, and transcripts of conversations) to give additional support to your concerns.
Consider a change in ministry.
There are times when―despite your best efforts―you realize change is not going to happen, or it will not happen at the pace at which you feel it needs to for your own ministry effectiveness. In those cases, consider whether it’s time to make a change. This might look like a change in position or ministry within the church, or a change to a new church entirely.
Pray earnestly and seek wise counsel about the best course of action. If you feel God directing you to leave, do so graciously. Humbly voice your concerns to the appropriate parties, shake the dust from your feet, and move on. Leave ill will behind. Continue to seek the best for the church and your relationships within it. Provide the information and resources needed for your successor to succeed. Trust God will bring healing to your heart, and that he can redeem any difficult situation or transition.