Monday Motivation: Seven Essential Strategies Every Church Needs
Have you had those Mondays when you sit in your office and wonder if all your efforts are really helping your church be the Church, as the Bible defines it? Have you felt like busyness has consumed energy, but you weren’t sure it was energy toward the right direction? Here is a system you can use to evaluate — not just where your church is today, but more importantly — what the priorities should be for the next season.
The Seven Strategies
In order to accomplish its biblical purpose, each church must have a specific strategy in at least seven areas. These areas are: worship, discipleship, community-building, local outreach, leadership development, church planting, and missions. The strategies become the tools, events, and programs which are used to accomplish the purposes of your church. They are the mechanics of doing ministry–the how and where people physically encounter and engage in ministry.
Most churches have one or two areas in which they have identified their desired outcomes and have developed strategies to get there. For example, in worship, the outcome of the strategy could be something like, “enable people to engage directly with God through music, prayer, and teaching, and to express to God the praise and glory He deserves.” This strategy not only includes the outcome or vision for each service, but it also would include the key components of every service. Continuing with the worship strategy, for example, each church would decide on the length of the service, number and type of songs, length of the message, when people would greet each other and for how long, etc., making sure it lines up with the stated strategy.
One of the cures for the Monday blues is to identify the one area that, if fully developed, would make the biggest difference in the effectiveness of your church, and then devoting weekly time and energy developing the strategy until you are sure that it is fulfilling its biblical purpose. Many churches recruit a team for each strategic area. And for those of you who have worked through your cultural context, values, and vision, those serve as an important guide for developing strategies in each of the seven areas.
Where do you start? Pick one of the seven areas and follow the steps below. Each of the seven strategies can be developed with the same process.
- Prayer. It’s essential to begin with prayer because God already knows how He wants each strategy expressed in your church.
- Define. The process continues with brainstorming the biblical purpose of the strategy, and what it looks like when fully expressed. For example, in the discipleship area, these would be the specific qualities found in a developed disciple. Clarity on this can take time; forming a team will help.
- Context. Review your cultural context to help you understand what would be a relevant expression of this strategy in your community.
- Document. The final product for each strategy is a one-page document that includes the purpose (or outcome), key components, roles, responsibilities, and evaluation points.
Do you feel intimidated by this? How about intrigued? Give the team at the office a call. We’d be glad to help you develop any or all of the strategies. You’ll still be tired most Mondays, but you’ll rest easier knowing it was for the best reasons. For more info on the seven essential strategies that every church needs, go to www.rmdcma.com/members.
~ Eric Oleson