Some GREAT stuff from this great guy today. I’ll just distill it way down for you here. There seems to be, according to my blog stats, a LOT of people reading this! Thanks! If you want to comment, say “hi” and introduce yourself, that’s cool!
1. A movement will never be safe, predictable, and clean. It must become dangerous again (the church around the world). Church has become too safe in the past few decades. Promising just a better life for everybody is too safe, instead of the hardcore reckless, “follow Jesus” kind of faith from the NT. People are seeking something spiritual, not just practical. Tell a dangerous message.
2. A movement is never about my ministry, but it’s about His kingdom. If God does something great in our church, it’s about his kingdom, which goes beyond the walls of the church. Would I be happy if God blessed the other church more than mine. That answer must be yes! You can’t affect your city by yourself anyway. And be sure to work to build your church on what it’s about, not what it isn’t. (Like… we’re not stuffy, we’re not about this or that… No need to build it on negatives.)
3. You will not lead a movement based on the old measurements of success. The scorecard has changed. New measurements are needed… Identity can not be in attendance numbers, must be on who we are in Christ. Don’t blame yourself for the declines, because then you might be tempted to take credit for the increases. You will be tempted to design services solely to bring people in. Then it’s “how can the people serve my vision” rather than “how can I set people free to serve God’s vision.” You start to lose focus and passion, and move too slowly… only to increase attendance. It’s far far better to influence the next generation of leaders.
And if that’s not enough, there was a second session with Craig, about leading a movement… equally good.
1. To lead a movement, you must see what others don’t see. See what’s coming, look at trends, the marketplace, culture, business, the movies, social networking… What’s coming? Don’t fish in a “blood red ocean” where there’s all that competition? Fish in the blue ocean where nobody else is fishing. The vision you see needs to be a big kingdom vision, a big cause… FIX something in your city. People don’t want to join a church, they want to be part of a movement.
2. To lead a movement, you must do what others won’t do. Revolutionaries break the rules, not just to be edgy, but for a purpose. Think of those amazing friends who broke the roof to bring their friend to Jesus. Craig likes to say “We’ll do anything short of sin to reach people for Christ”. This means we fail some, too. Jesus broke rules, Martin Luther broke rules. Wesley broke rules. Ask new questions. Not “How can we get more in?” instead… “How can we influence more people?”
3. To lead a movement, you must hurt like others don’t hurt. Lots of people won’t understand and will shoot at you. You’re not doing much at all if you don’t get called a cult every now and then. Not doing anything important if nobody calls you a heretic. Don’t respond to small numbers of critics, just do what God calls you do to.
You will always be criticized, always misunderstood, always failing at something even, and always dissatisfied (When you lose this “holy misery”, you will lose your effectiveness.)