Want a Great Small Church? Avoid These Common Mistakes

Thumbs-down logoA lot of websites define themselves by what they’re against, instead of what they’re for. No, I won’t name any – that would make me one of them.

Unfortunately there are a lot of churches that do the same.

Here at New Small Church, we prefer to be in favor of good things before we’re against bad things. That’s what yesterday’s post was all about.

But, in addition to all the great things we’re for, there are a few things we’re against.

Why? Because we’ve discovered that there are some unhealthy attitudes we can all slip in to. And it’s a mistake to carry them around if you want many years of healthy, helpful ministry – especially in a Small Church.

We want New Small Church to be here for many years of valuable ministry, so here are some fairly common mistakes we plan to avoid. And we’d encourage you to do the same.



  • Put down big churches, megachurches, house churches or their leaders. Everyone has something to bring to the table. There are great churches of all types and sizes in the world. We’re grateful for all of them. But we’re here for the small ones.
  • Argue for or against a particular ministry style, denomination or theological niche. Do you and your Small Church love Jesus? You’ll find a home here. Even if we disagree on Calvinism, the Rapture, spiritual gifts, church growth strategies, music styles, clothing styles, preaching styles, bible translations, women in leadership, politics, Chick-Fil-A or puppies.
  • Whine, complain or throw bombs. Yes, we’ll tackle real-life issues. We’ll even disagree with each other. But the emphasis will be on finding common ground, not courting controversy. What is it about the internet that causes some Christians, even ministers, to say some of the most unkind and unchristian things? It’s not unusual for Christian bloggers to tell you that they receive more nastiness from readers self-identifying as Christians than from non-believers. To be fair, 99% of the readers of a Christian blog are likely to be church-goers, but that doesn’t change the fact that this isn’t how it ought to be.

To finish up for now, here are a few more things we won’t do:

  • Offer excuses for why our churches are small
  • Blame others for our failures or our feelings
  • Whine about lack of funds, facilities, etc.
  • Try to duplicate megachurch models on a smaller scale
  • Worry about how to become bigger
  • Act defensively
  • Quit

That last point may be the main thing we’re not – we’re not quitters. New Small Church is like all Small Churches. We’re in it for the long haul. Small Churches have been counted out for about 2,000 years but we keep on popping up and sticking around. Sometimes you just have to stand back in awe and appreciate such stubbornness.

Want to know more about what we’re not? Check out the How to Participate – Without Being a Jerk page.


Can you think of other mistakes Small Churches need to avoid? Do you have a question or idea for us?
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