Stuff I Like (September 2015)

lonely 1240 x 697Today is the second edition of our new monthly feature, exclusively for NewSmallChurch.com readers.

Links to posts I found that I think you’ll be interested in.


Also, you can read today’s new Pivot blog post by clicking here:
The Lonely Small Church Pastor: Breaking the Cycle


I found a large, eclectic group in September. At this pace, I may do this more than once a month.

6 Reasons It Is More Difficult to Grow a Church Today

Thom Rainer‘s short, practical list of issues we need to be aware of.

“Many churches have their members so busy they don’t have time to develop relationships with unchurched people and non-Christians. Meetings and activities have become substitutes for real ministry.”

 

5 Things Small Churches Need to Know About Mental Health

Israel Steinmetz tackles an important, but often overlooked issue and how small churches can address it well. 

“Churches—particularly small churches—can serve as healing communities for people with mental health concerns.”

 

5 Steps To Healthy Church Growth

Don’t let the title fool you. Ryan Stigile has some very healthy alternatives to a lot of the numbers orientation in most church growth material.

“’Healthy things grow.’ Many church leaders use this principle to justify an over appetite for growth. . . . The mindset may create some short-term spikes in attendance but it will not lead to lasting impact.”

 

5 Habits of the Church That Kicked Gossip to the Curb

Like Stigile’s post, this is also from Equip Magazine. Caitlin Meadows addresses this all-too-common, but usually ignored church killer.

“It may seem impossible, but with intentionality and prayer a church can kill the rumor weed before it takes over.”

 

Go Big or Go Home: How “Big” Has Invaded the Church

Heather Choate Davis dares us to ask hard questions about church growth. Like, “why?”

“The church was never meant to be in the business of “big”; still, we can’t seem to escape its perpetual temptation. …Herein lies the danger of “big”: tangible growth is easy to credit as blessing, but releasing our bounty back out to his Kingdom goes against every self-preservation instinct we have in our bodies.”

 

How Will Churches Grow Without Becoming Megachurches?

Andrew Johnson wrote this post about the future of church growth.

“What worked in the 1980s doesn’t fly with our generation … Our generation is looking for real relationships, they are looking for a place when they can say, ‘I’m part of this, I’m not just a number.’ … What we are realizing is that maybe the Bible had it right when the model was small.”

 

Finally, last week I got to meet the author of this great piece from last year. It’s worth another look.

5 Myths About Small Church Pastors

Eric W. Moore reminds us that it’s wrong to assume that a small church must be suffering from bad leadership.

“I have found that many pastors of smaller churches have great organizational skills. When you consider that the percentage of volunteers to paid staff in the small church is extremely high, the pastor must organize around peoples’ passion, interest, and giftedness.”

Got Anything Else?

If you find blog posts, books or podcasts you like, let me know. I may include them in next month’s Stuff I Like post.

So what do you think? What did you like and/or disagree with in these posts?

We want to hear from you. Yes, you!
Enter your comment right below this post and get in on the conversation.

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4 thoughts on “Stuff I Like (September 2015)”

  1. Karl, Lonely is a dangerous place for a pastor to be. it not only leads to burn out and unhealthy thinking, it can be a place sin can develop in our lives. thanks for the post and the ideas to overcome our isolation.

  2. Norman, I understand the dilemma. It’s been that way for generations. However the scripture speaks to this. It says Jesus has made you “members of one another”. Rom. 12:5; 1 Cor. 12:15,18, 27; Eph 4:25 It is a work he has done. If they only view membership as an institutional status, then they don’t understand how Jesus views membership. That is part of the systemic corruption. Are they prepared to reject His work? They need to grasp you are to be an “example” of what it means to be a “member”, not just a lecturer of what it means. If they accept the theology, both you and they must be prepared to practice it. Breaking a bad cycle of tradition is the same as throwing down idols. If they want you to be be a “teacher”, then they must be willing to be students who will be “fully trained” to “be like you”. Luke 6:40. If they are rebellious against that, then…God will lead you with His response. Karl is challenging a systemic corruption on this point. This corruption is tied to other corruptions but address each one with the scriptures. The “truth will set you free.” John 8:32

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