Change – over the last ten or so years I’ve changed. Which is good. None of us stay the same for long and we change in all sorts of ways.
Well I’m no exception, in fact, I think I would have brushed me off if I had talked about these things fifteen years ago. I realize I take a risk but here’s my story of huge change…
Someone wrote to me who has known me for decades and said after reading my last Blog Post, “It’s so interesting to see you write this … it’s certainly very different to the Ps Nick I remember when discussing attendance numbers and church stats for the year – “The graph must always go up!” I remember you saying this multiple times!” Another said, “My, how you have changed since the church growth days…”
The changes all began about 10 years ago. Karen and I moved to Amsterdam to ignite new networks of churches. I discovered there were thousands of towns and villages in the South of Holland, France, Spain, Belgium that had no community of faith active in it.
I began to realize that if we plant churches as we always have, we may be adding churches but we certainly wouldn’t be multiplying them. For example, finding a group of at least 20 people to begin the church (many towns didn’t have Christians in them) and a suitable building plus the finances needed, the nations in Europe would not be touched.
I pastored a large church and was always pushing for bigger numbers every year. That’s what I kept telling our church too. My heart was in the right place – it was about reaching people in the city who needed to know Jesus. But on reflection with a large church I found there was so much attention, time and resources that went into keeping things going - like attendance numbers, buildings, cash and programs. Lots of effort went into events. Which were great by the way. We had many small groups. Yet a huge amount of our energy and time went into the Sunday services.
Now I wonder, what if the priority had been focusing on the small instead of the big? I wonder if we had kept on multiplying churches and not been so concerned with bigger and bigger numbers. I remember thinking the larger the church becomes, we can’t plant churches, for we need every person involved in ministry in this church. Whilst it was good, I don’t think it was great.
The Mindset Changes Summed up:
We live and learn.
And hopefully we are open enough to learn and big enough to change! I look back and I’m certainly not beating myself up as it was all part of the learning and change process. That, got me to where I am today.
More details of the above and the how to’s are It’s all in my latest book; “How to Multiply Churches”. Special price for September only!!
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A passionate international speaker, eager to share on faith, leadership, self care, healing, church planting, relationships and the Holy Spirit, Nick's heart is to simply add his voice to the lead pastors voice.
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