Reviewing the state of the church

In the old days, people in our church came to church on New Year’s Day. They heard about the state of the church. Now that happens on the first Sunday of the new year. I loved our pastor’s approach this year. You might consider it yourself, whether you are leading an organization or yourself.

His own calling

He talked about 5 things he reminds himself of regularly. It’s a personal recalibration, a resetting routine. Starting this way is risky, it’s vulnerable, and it creates a model for the rest of us.

Two core values of our church

He reminded us of two values that guide us. Longevity and change. How we do things matters. And he reminded us that we are a church, not anything else that groups of people might be.

8 things that we as a church are about. 

These are broad ideas, cutting across age and gender and time. They aren’t one year resolutions or specific programs, but provide touchstones for both.

8 things we as individuals need to be looking at this year. 

And after starting with his own commitments, he ended with an invitation and challenge to us. Specific, whole person choices for the year.

Here’s what that framework meant to me:

  • As a colleague, it reminds me of what matters to him. how he will measure his own work.
  • As a staff member, it reminds me of what we are pouring our energy into. If it fits, it ships. If it doesn’t, don’t.
  • As a leader, it reminds me of how to work. Because our ways of working have to reflect what we do.
  • As a person, it challenges me to pursue my own recalibration, to list simply my core affirmations.

Starting the year with a clear reminder of our community commitments is a good routine.

One thought on “Reviewing the state of the church

  1. Rich Dixon

    All good stuff, but one thing stands out…he reminded us we are a church. Might sound silly, but messages and roles get easily confused. Some thoughts.

    Do we need a sign in the lobby? WE ARE A CHURCH. Might be a cool reminder.

    “WE ARE”, not “THIS IS”. Big distinction. While we’re parsing words, why “A” church and not “THE” church?

    What’s it mean…being a church? I’ll bet there’s a pretty broad spectrum of definitions.

    I’m glad I don’t lead one of those church things. Those four words might create a lot of work and thought and writing and stuff. 🙂


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