OC#17 Breakout Notes: Reimagining What A Small Church Can Do

Last week, Tim Tharp and I got the opportunity speak to Small Churches at the Orange Conference.  What an honor and privilege to be able to share what God has been doing in our community.  I wanted to highlight the Pivots again for anyone who might have missed them (my wife reminded me that I talked way too fast…sorry about that).

  • Pivot #1: Priorities
    • From advocating for Adults to championing for Children
    • Who gets the most time, energy, and money at your church?  If you are like most churches – then it is Adults.  Adults will get what they need.  Kids need someone to speak up for them.  Who is championing Children and Students being a priority in your church?  If you don’t make kids a priority then no one will.
    • Small Churches make the greatest impact when – we put Children at the center of our church
  • Pivot #2: Strategy
    • From a mindset of Scarcity to Sufficiency
    • Feeling like we don’t have enough isn’t an emotion reserved for small churches.  Everyone wants more – more volunteers, more space, more money!  But what if we believed that we had enough of what we needed to make a difference in people’s lives. HOW we use what we have, our strategy, is more important than the quantity of our resources.
    • Small Churches make the greatest impact when – we believe we have enough
  • Pivot #3: Focus
    • From focusing on our congregation to focusing on our community
    • I’m not sure when exactly it happened – but at some point, during my last few years in ministry, I realized that I spend the majority of my time caring for and managing the business of ministry.  Maybe I should say the BUSYNESS of ministry.  When did we stop making time for people that needed help the most?  It wasn’t a deliberate shift away from my community, but it will take intentional effort to get back to serving my congregation and community.
    • Small Churches make the greatest impact when – we look beyond the confines of the Sanctuary – into the needs of our community
  • Pivot #4: Perspective
    • How we see other churches in our community from competition to colleagues
    • This might be the hardest lesson for leaders and pastors.  If we are honest, most of us have been trained that for our church to succeed, other churches in our community must fail.  If you are like me you often see the church down the street as competition.  Quickly my energy is spent trying to build my Kingdom instead of working to build God’s Kingdom.  Guess which one will last?
    • Small Churches make the greatest impact when – we realize that when any church in our community wins our entire community wins

I hope that this was helpful.  I can’t tell you how cool it was to be able to share about some of the ways that Wrightsville First United Methodist has been utilizing these principles to transform our church.  If you would like more information about the Breakout you can find me at – kirkhagan(at)gmail.