Monday Morning Insights

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    Is your church lying?

    Is your church lying?

    Greg Stier has a gripe with many churches:  their mission statement is a lie.  In Greg's words:  when it comes to evangelism, a mission statement can turn from big black letters on a church marquee to a little, white lie that the church is telling the community. Strike that … it’s a big lie.


    Is your church lying?

    What is your church's mission statement?  Usually it has something to do with both discipleship and evangelism.

    It can be said of all churches that we are not doing as well at accomplishing our mission as we should or could be.  But Greg brings up a good point:  what if we're not accomplishing our mission statement AT ALL?

    Greg continues:  "If we are proclaiming to the members of our congregation and community that evangelism is a primary purpose via our church’s mission statement and we are not making it a central priority of our church’s program and budgets then that mission statement is a lie."

    So... how's your church doing?  Are you living out your mission statement, or trying to make excuses as to why you're not acheiving it?

    Here are some questions that Stier thinks are helpful to ask:

    -Have you been equipped by your church to effectively share your faith and is someone in your church holding you accountable to do it? As a result how often are you evangelizing in your own neighborhood, workplace, school and circle of friends?

    -How often is your pastor and church leadership personally sharing their faith with others (not counting the times they share the gospel from the pulpit or in a Sunday school class) and sharing the stories with the church congregation to inspire them to faithfully share the gospel as well?

    -How many resources (time, talent and treasure) are being deployed by your church to mobilize God’s people for personal evangelism?

    -Have sporadic outreach meetings (Easter, Christmas, etc) replaced the push for relational evangelism in your church?

    -How much of your church’s numeric growth is due to newly converted people verses just Christian people trying to find a new church?

    -How much effort is being put into training teenagers and children to share their faith since they are most open to the gospel demographically?

    -On a scale from 1-10 how much is evangelism a true priority as opposed to a stated priority in your church in your opinion?

    So... how is YOUR church doing?  Are you on mission?

    I'd love to hear your thoughts.  You can read all of Greg's article here...






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    1. Samuel Sutter on Tue, October 19, 2010

      convicting. although after looking at the questions i think we’re doing ok, well at least we’re not lying. Great checkup questions though.

    2. Leonard on Tue, October 19, 2010

      Great questions and love the push on this.  We say we are about three things all the time.  Reaching people for Christ, growing people to maturity and developing leaders.  We set our goals around this every year. 

      We see about 80-100 people a year trust Christ, we are strengthening the discipleship process by equipping disciplers and our leadership development is usually pretty strong.

    3. unknown on Tue, October 19, 2010

      This is interesting-we have a saying in the South (for all I know it’s not unique to the South)-if a church sign says, “all are welcome” that means, “only people like us”....not that our church signs bear our mission statements.  It’s sad but it typically rings true (at least in my admittedly limited experience).  smile

      It reminds me of the stories about the churches that use the word ‘contemporary’ to describe their worship services-it’s believed around here that if a church uses the word ‘contemporary’ to describe their worship services-get ready to hear “Shout to the Lord” played on a piano and organ only…maybe an acoustic guitar too…maybe.  Not that there is anything wrong with that of course…but the choice of verbage is interesting.  smile

    4. Peter Hamm on Tue, October 19, 2010

      These are excellent and hard questions indeed! Thanks for posting! In some areas we do exceptionally well. I wonder a little at others, at least as far as I myself am concerned.

    5. CS on Tue, October 19, 2010

      Another similar area where churches lie is when they have, “file cabinet theology.”  Their mission statements and statements of faith display orthodox, standard Christianity, yet they don’t teach it at all.


    6. Jan on Mon, October 25, 2010

      And I think we often say what we would like to believe of ourselves.  So, we are lying to ourselves.

      How many of you have been in candidating situations where the church presented itself as one thing, but come to find out they are completely the opposite of what they said.

      I think self deception might be a better word than out and out lying.

    7. Peter Hamm on Tue, October 26, 2010


      I’ve taken myself out of the running for so many churches (this was over 5 years ago) because, indeed, as you got deeper in the process, they were not what they seemed.

      I’m pleased to report that the church I’ve been at for 5.5 years is, although not perfect, exactly what they appear at first glance. No posturing at all.

      It’s refreshing, and probably why our church has grown to be the home church of 5% or more of our area’s people.

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