My friend Doug McClintic gave me a book to read a few months ago that addresses how to organize congregations to succeed in their mission. In the Foreword, Tom Bandy asks two critical questions, “Do you really want the mission to succeed? Are you prepared to take everything, change everything, and do whatever it takes – even if it means altering long and familiar habits, redeveloping programs, and redeploying sacred assets?

Too many churches aren’t committed to accomplishing the mission. They’re committed to maintenance. Too many churches in the U.S. are committed to more seats filled on Sundays, bigger budgets and bigger buildings, but not necessarily to accomplishing the redemptive mission of Jesus in this world.

Congregations don’t win by sporting the largest auditoriums any more than sports teams win by congregating in the largest stadium. Congregations and teams win by reaching the goal. It may well be that winning teams tend to have better stadiums and that winning congregations tend to have better auditoriums, but don’t confuse the consequence with the cause.

Success is achieving an intended outcome. Success in God’s Church is achieving the outcome God intends. Another word for this outcome is mission.

John Kaiser, Winning on Purpose, Abingdon Press, 2006 (p. 19)

What do you think?

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