My prayerful dream for today is to challenge our status quo and stimulate serious conversations in homes and churches worldwide.
Over the last year, I’ve asked one specific question to every Christian Business owner and manager that I’ve met. Here is the question.
What year over year percentage increase in sales or customers would constitute a healthy and successful business?
My research is casual, only designed to stimulate a conversation with you and your Leaders.
The average response to my question is that a Business should grow by 6.5% in terms of increased customers, clients or product sales every year to be considered healthy. Here’s the fascinating point. These same men and women, including you and I, are the leaders in our churches. We pray, share, discuss, set direction, encourage and lead our churches. Yet, the average growth rate in our churches is dismal compared to the business community. A quick look at church Annual Report stats suggests that the average growth rate of churches is 1% – 2% a year.
“Nation wide research suggests that poor to fair growth in churches is between 2-5% a year.” (Gary L. McIntosh)
Anyone want their church to be known as poor to fair?
Church health research and Pastors themselves suggest a healthy church should have an annual attendance growth rate of 6% in worship services each year. This positive growth is a result of prayer, scripturally sound teaching and consistency in vision, mission and values. I concur Ministry is different from the business world of enterprise. But, our goal in church is unmeasurably greater. Your church is, or should be, a living organism. Just like the human body, it is designed to grow and heal itself.
So, here is my question that I’d love each of you to prayerfully share and converse with your Pastor or Leadership Board. Why is it we expect and aim for our businesses to have a 6.5% increase every year yet we, the same leaders, are satisfied with a 1% growth in our churches?
Leadership is … prayerfully seeking healthy churches.
Yours in Service,
Laurie D. Kennedy