As you know, over the last number of weeks we have been giving thanks for the ways that God has been growing First Church and also exploring seven factors that get more challenging as the church grows. To explore these challenges we have been examining these seven factors using Carey Nieuwhof’s article “7 Things That Get Harder as Your Church (you can find the whole article at: https://careynieuwhof.com/7-things-that-get-harder-as-your-church-grows/).
Although these factors present their own forms of challenge, they can also present exciting opportunities. For me this fourth factor that we are lifting up is one of those powerful possibilities. The idea of raising up other leaders who in turn can influence many others through THEIR leadership is very captivating to me. I think part of the reason this excites me so much is because we see that this is exactly what Jesus did. His influence had such a multiplying effect because He had the ability to raise up leaders who affected the lives of many others.
Yet despite knowing how important it is raise up new leaders, we still struggle to do it. As Nieuwhof comments:
If you’re going to lead a growing church effectively, you have to begin leading leaders instead of leading people.
That’s a hard shift for many people, including church staff.
There’s a temptation to want to be known and recognized by everyone you’re leading. The truly great leaders are prepared not to do that.
They realize that their greatest success will be found in leading staff and volunteers who can, in turn, lead others.
Which also means sometimes they get the credit rather than you. Which again, is fine if you’re committed to becoming an effective leader.
If you’re not fine with others receiving the credit, you’ll eventually stunt the church’s growth to the level of your insecurity.
But you must shift from leading people to leading leaders if you hope to reach more people.
First Church we DO hope to reach more people in the love of Jesus Christ. We DO hope to see more and more Transformation in Christ, Changing Lives Inside and Out.
As you know, TODAY is our annual commitment Sunday and I am so very grateful for the impact that your financial commitment makes and how it will enable us to raise up new leaders—some for today, some for tomorrow (children and youth), some to be church leaders, and some to be community leaders all in the name of Jesus Christ!
Thank you First Church for being willing to be the type of church that creates maximum impact for the Kingdom of God!