Church growth is a fickle thing. Too much focus on one area and not another on another and you could see your numbers fading. Besides shrinking church growth, you could also face personal discouragement and disappointment. No matter who you are, these things can happen.
The best way to keep growing and moving forward in ministry is to avoid doing the wrong things. (I’ve been there and done that!) Keep your eyes peeled for this ministry-killers.
Adopting the wrong Elijah mantle: Elijah had his moments. He threatened a monarchy that had almost succeeded in snuffing out the prophets of their time. When things got really tough, he sat alone in the dirt and begged God for death. While, you and I probably wouldn’t be that extreme, if we’re honest, we can likely relate to the overwhelming loneliness that comes, at times, with ministry. Elijah was convinced he was the ONLY one left. He was all by himself, left to fight for his life. God encouraged him by telling him he wasn’t the last man standing. Thousands of others stood on the side of God–Elijah just couldn’t see them. Don’t take on this mindset. The enemy loves to isolate us, especially when we feel down already. Refuse to believe him–instead, believe the report of the Lord!
Putting kids second: At times, I have put kids second in my ministry. Once, after a major recruitment push, I lost focus for a few weeks as I worked hard training my new volunteers. My focus had shifted to mentoring volunteers, not mentoring kids. My awareness of the shift occurred one day when I was working the phones. I had called a volunteer to encourage him. In between smiles and atta-boys, I scolded my youngest son for interrupting me continually on the phone. When I finally finished my call, I sought my son out to see what he wanted. “Mom, I wish you’d talk to me like you talk to Mike on the phone,” he said with a sad face. Wow! What a moment of truth! It snapped me back into balance.
Neglecting the facility: It’s so easy to push those small (and big) maintenance items to the bottom of the punch list. If your room needs painting or new carpet, don’t keep putting it off. Kids (and parents) notice these things. Let kids know you care by keeping your facility up to date and clean.
Abandoning communication: Find some way to stay connected with kids and parents. I use a newsletter/Facebook page/phone call combination. I make myself available for questions and get to know parents on a first name basis.
Working by yourself: Another area I struggle in, doing everything myself. I encourage you to go through your itinerary and find three things you can delegate. Do you have to dothe object lesson? Must you dole out the snacks? Get people involved in the ministry. The more the merrier and the more anointed!