Tag Archive - over

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Is your Church Designed to get Stuck?

Your church is perfectly designed to get the results you’re currently getting. You’ve probably heard that said before. That means if your church is stuck it’s probably because it’s been designed to be stuck. Now I know you didn’t do that on purpose, I know you want to reach as many people with the Gospel as you possibly can. But churches get stuck because they’re designed, by intention or neglect, to be stuck.

All kinds of churches are designed to be stuck. It happens when they execute a plan that leads them to become stuck. You could say that they purposely do it on accident. They’ve planned their work and successfully worked their plan, it just hasn’t resulted in success that they thought it would, instead it results in being stuck. There are a lot of ways churches are successfully designed to get stuck…here are a few:

#1 Over-Controlling

Okay, so that’s not really a word. I just couldn’t think of another way to say it. But it doesn’t matter, it’s true. Sometimes the reason a church is stuck is because they are led by a controlling leader. Every decision must go through them, they always have the best ideas, and it always has to be their way. That always leads to things slowing down and getting stuck.

#2 Over-Structuring

When structure begins to out pace growth, churches end up getting stuck. You may end up with a great, efficient, and stable structure but your church will only grow to the capacity of the structure you’ve created. Great structure is designed to chase growth not the other way around.

#3 Over-Staffing

When churches hire staff to do ministry instead of develop people and lead teams (you know the whole equip the saints to do the work of the ministry thing that the Apostle Paul talks about in his letter to the Ephesians) it leads to churches getting stuck.

#4 Over-Extending

Some churches are very eager to take ground, so much so that they actually over-extend themselves. It’s ironic that in their intention to take new Kingdom ground that they actually can lead themselves to becoming stuck. You see sometimes they stretch themselves too thin through taking on too much debt, running too many ministry programs, or hiring too many people that they actually prevent themselves from moving forward.

#5 Over-Educating

When churches confuse discipleship with education they get stuck. They may successfully educate people about the bible but that just leads to greater biblical knowledge, not action. If information changed people’s lives, then no one would ever smoke and the cigarette industry would go bankrupt.

Have you inadvertently designed your church to get stuck? Need a little help changing things up and getting unstuck? Contact the Unstuck Group. We’ve been helping hundreds of churches get unstuck for the last couple of years. We could help your church too.


Posted in Leadership

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Why going Multisite won’t Fix your Church

The last stats I saw showed that there are more than 8,000 multisite churches across America and more than 1,600 mega churches (churches of more than 2,000 people in weekly attendance). While both are growing, the multisite church movement has outpaced the mega church movement in America. What was once seen as only a Band-Aid strategy for space issues at mega churches has become a vehicle for growth in local churches of all kinds and all sizes (the average size a church goes multisite is around 850-1200). “Multi” doesn’t mean “Mega” anymore.

I’m excited about this trend, because I’m excited about churches growing and reaching new people with the Gospel. But one trend I’ve observed about the multisite movement concerns me. 80% of churches in America are stuck or in decline and a growing number of them are looking to multisite as the silver bullet to fix their “stuckness.” Here’s why I’m concerned…

1. There is no Silver Bullet Fix for your Church

I’ve never seen a church (or a business, relationship, or anything else in life for that matter) where there was a silver bullet fix. For churches that are stuck or in decline, please don’t multisite. Trust me, you’ll only make it worse. Master the standard and then innovate.

2. Don’t go Multisite until you have to

Don’t go multisite until you have to. Sounds simple enough right? What that means is if you don’t have momentum don’t try to manufacture it through going multisite. It will backfire on you. If you’re already doing multiple services, if you’re already growing and reaching new people with the Gospel, if you already have momentum, if you already have the leadership and organizational bandwidth to do it then by all means, please, go multisite.

3. Don’t replicate Complexity

It’s near impossible to replicate complexity and let’s face it most churches in America are complex. If you have a menu approach to ministry where you pride yourself on having something for everyone it’s going to be difficult to replicate that at a new campus.

4. Going Multisite shines a light on your Strengths AND your Weaknesses

While your church may have some islands of strength to build on (just about every church does), it also has some weakness (again just about every church does). Multisite may amplify your strengths but it will do the same to your weaknesses, the ones you know about, and the ones you don’t.

5. Overextending yourself always Leads to Decline

One of my greatest concerns I see in churches going multisite before they’re ready is that they have a tendency to overextend themselves when it comes to staff, volunteers, finances, and so on. Over reaching always leads to decline and if you’re already stuck or declining multisite isn’t going to help.

Photo Credit: kevin dooley via Compfight cc


Posted in Leadership