Every church leader wants his or her church to be healthy. Unfortunately, not every church is healthy, and many leaders do not know how to turn that around. After serving as a bivocational pastor for twenty years in one small, rural church and later serving as a Resource Minister in our region with immediate responsibility for over 130 churches, I've seen more than my share of unhealthy churches and the frustrations of those trying to change them.
It's important to note that there is no quick fix for an unhealthy church. Your church did not get in its current condition yesterday, and you're not going to change it tomorrow. It can take years to help an unhealthy church regain its health. Even though you cannot change your church tomorrow, you can start the process tomorrow.
That process begins by identifying what has led to the church's poor health. As I mention in my book, there are several possibilities.
- Unresolved conflict will always lead to a church becoming unhealthy. Conflict cannot be avoided in churches, but it does not have to lead to a lack of health.
- Many smaller churches are focused more on themselves that on the needs of others. Such inward focus will lead to poor health.
- Some smaller churches struggle with cultural indifference. They don't understand today's culture, and may not even want to, so they are unable to minister to it. This causes them to become even more ingrown and unhealthy.
- Poor leadership is almost a given. This may be pastoral or lay leadership, but a church will never be any healthier than its leadership.
- A lack of vision and purpose will always cause a church to become unhealthy.
- Many smaller churches struggle with poor self-esteem which leads to poor health.
I am also available to lead my seminar based on this book for your denomination,your district or your individual church. I do limit the number of these I do each year so I encourage you to contact me soon if you are interested in scheduling a seminar.
I pray that 2018 is a great year for your church!