- Tony Lynn
Seven questions pursuing church Health
PLYMOUTH – At your invitation . . .
I would be happy to lead your local church leadership, or better yet, a gathering of a few local church leadership teams in your area in a workshop filled with discussions, activities, and discoveries that will reignite a new passion for your church’s future. Imagine a one-time gathering of 3 hours during one weeknight, or on a Saturday, or during a Sunday afternoon where you could have conversations with people from your church. I will make myself available to fit your schedule.
We would walk through seven questions and a process that will help your church take its next step to accelerate a Gospel movement in the lives of your members and in the lives of those in your community. Here is a general description of the questions:
1. What is your church’s current health condition?
By looking at five options, you and your leadership will evaluate the current health of your church. You will enjoy strolling through the options to see if everyone can easily agree on the church’s current wellness.
2. Does the church’s decision-making process and flow of relationships match its size?
The size of your church does not decrease or increase the value of the church, but the size of your church should impact decision-making and the relationship flow. When these elements of church do not match, health is hindered, and injuries occur.
3. How old is the church?
The older the church the more pastors it had, the more models of ministry were followed, the more positive and negative events that occurred in its history, the more generations exist in the congregation, and the longer some things have become sacred cows.
4. At what point is the church in its journey?
Imagine one car with four potential drivers traveling together on a long journey over a mountain range, then ask yourself who is driving this car? Is it vision? Is it disciple making? Is it programs? Is it management?
5. What is the level of generosity/stinginess in the church?
The generosity/stinginess of the church members informs you as to whether the members believe they are giving to something meaningful, and whether they trust those who spend the funds? Examining how much is spent in the church compared to the amounts helping others outside the church reveals the Kingdom of God vision of the members.
6. What is the current pastor’s functional strength?
Ephesians 4:11 mentions apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors, and teachers. These functions were perfectly carried out in Jesus Christ who left those functions to us to complete as united church members. Pastors, elders, deacons, whatever designation is used in your church is healthier when leaders and members fill-in the gaps others are not easily suited to complete.
7. What is the current pastor’s length of service?
Most unions of pastors and churches go through three stages: the launch zone, the growth zone, and the fizzle zone. The most effective pastors with long records of service will tell you that they remained at one address for decades because they relaunched the same church before the fizzle zone led to the frozen zone. Leaders and members of the church should renew their health, every four to five years by asking:
What is working?
What is broken?
What is confusing?
What is missing?
Coaching in Six One-hour Sessions
If you desire, I will meet with you one-time every two-weeks, for a duration of one-hour, for a total of twelve-weeks. You will read one short article in preparation for the session, then apply that article to your church. These one-hour sessions will give time for each church leadership team to dig into more deeply one of these previous seven questions.
Another Six Sessions to Create a Church Wellness Plan
After the time of coaching is ended, each church leadership team will be guided to repeat the schedule together, for twelve more weeks, where they will focus on finding precise solutions that will lead to better health for the church. While looking for solutions, I will be available and can offer solutions, but searching for the correct solutions together may be energizing for the leaders and members of the church.
Releasing the Revitalization Movement
After the efforts are completed during those previous six months, the church’s leadership team can set-up a party where they can explain the grand vision they believe will start and continue sustained health in the church. The details can be left to each church to do as they believe matches their own congregation. The focus is on making the renewed mission, vision, values, and strategy of the church aim precisely for church health.
Quick Summary of Sixteen Hours in Seven Months
One 3-hour introduction workshop with me
Six 1-hour coaching sessions digging into the questions with me
Six 1-hour solution finding sessions with church leaders & members
One 1-hour revitalization announcement party with the entire church
If you want to invite me to serve you with “Seven Questions Pursuing Church Health,” call or write to Dan Carty who will set up an appointment between us: Dan Carty, (734) 776-6495 or Dan@bscm.org – I look forward to hearing from you. Sixteen hours over the course of seven months could keep your church health for decades to come.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Dr. Tony L. Lynn is the State Director of Missions for the Baptist State Convention of Michigan. Before coming on staff at the BSCM, Tony served as lead pastor for more than six years at Crosspoint Church in Monroe, Michigan. He and his wife, Jamie, also served with the International Mission Board in Africa and in Europe.