Simplicity is a never-ending responsibility, especially for growing churches. It must stay as a priority, though. Keeping a simplified perspective and approach will reassure the surrounding community of coming back to church after the pandemic. Yes, it seems like a daunting task; but take heart, according to Fight for Simplicity as Your Church Grows, when simplicity is established and maintained, your church will be ready to reach, welcome, and disciple even more people when you take these next steps into account:
Look at the Whole Calendar
These 3 departments know the complicated nature of a church calendar:
- Communications (get people there)
- Finance (pay for people there)
- Facilities (have a place for people to sit)
Everyone works so much in their own world that they forget what everyone else does. This is a poor way to plan, especially as your church grows.
→ Action: Put everything in one place, preferably printed on the wall. Give the staff a scope of what all goes on. Do it from the perspective of church members, such as families, empty nesters, etc.
Check with your ChMS Company
Check with your ChMS company for new ways to manage things more easily. Technology should be a tool to help your church. As you grow, new features in your database tools may be able to help alleviate complexity. Since these tools would be new to you, reach out to the experts. A tiny time investment often creates huge returns.
→ Action: Schedule time with your ChMS company. Ask how larger, growing churches use the tool to streamline operations and simplify the work.
Do a Regular Review of Everything
Personal productivity often involves a regular review of projects, commitments, goals, and more. Looking at these lists brings out new ideas and insights. Without a regular review, things get lost. The same is true for your church. Without a regular review of the calendar and plan, things get overlooked.
→ Action: Dedicate 30 minutes once a month in your weekly staff meeting to review the previous month and preview the upcoming months. Decide what can be simplified, shifted, or changed next time. Do a quarterly review for 2-3 hours and ask hard questions about what’s on deck.
Set up these steps as part of your routine
That might seem redundant to say and it shouldn’t be viewed as laborious or monotonous, but rather as a priority that will keep you focused and in alignment with your church growth mission statement, especially as a church after the pandemic, as discussed in a previous blog, Fight for Simplicity as Your Church Grows: 3 Common Mistakes . Growing a church requires vision, thoughts and strategy, and this is what successful churches are doing. People are drawn to a mission and want to be part of something active including outreach, discipleship and most of all service. The church is full of so many people with different gifts, talents and resources.
As you are working on simplicity, choose to stay focused, be willing to make cuts and say no when necessary, and do not overwhelm the congregants or yourselves. These can be won battles for your church’s benefit as outlined in Fight for Simplicity as Your Church Grows: The Symptoms of Complexity. Church growth requires that while we are proactive on our end with strategizing and planning, we ultimately acknowledge that God is in full control. Our plans must be saturated in prayer and our techniques rooted in devotion to God. Church growth is a gift. How you model the church growth vision (from the pulpit and as leadership in general) so that no one is confused about all that your church does in order to maintain focus to keep people engaged, will eliminate complexity and embrace simplicity.
As we focus on the dimensions of church growth, we cannot forget that at the core it involves people and their spiritual lives, along with the devotion of corporate and private prayers, continual and sacrificial ministries, and obedience to God’s will. Growth begets growth to the ends of the earth.
Simplicity is a never-ending responsibility, especially for growing churches. It must stay as a priority, though. When it does, your church is ready to reach more people. Our newest resource, Fight for Simplicity as Your Church Grows, eliminates this frustration for you, your staff, and your church along with the other guides in the Roadmaps Series: Solutions to Large Church Problems. And, to make it even easier and so you don’t miss any of our Church Growth Resources, you can also receive our ministry blog posts straight to your inbox!
Donna is ACS Technologies’ Chief Customer Officer. Her focus is on strategic planning and operations of the customer experience organization. This includes Implementation, Ministry Success, Learning, Training, and Customer Service. Donna’s focus and passion have always been for our ministry partners as she has worked in the service part of the organization her entire career. Donna graduated from Lander College with a BS Degree in Computer Science and joined the company in 1985 as a Customer Support Representative.