The Witness – May 10-16, 2015

 The Seven Losses of Church Growth

By Thom Rainer,

Most church members do desire to see their churches grow . . . until the growth affects them. It is at that point, some can become disillusioned and critical. What is it about growth that impacts some members negatively?

1. Loss of familiarity. When a church is growing, it becomes a different church. Some church members grieve and miss “the good old days.”

2. Loss of memories.

3. Loss of comfort. Growth can mean that the closest parking spots are no longer available, or that the traffic flow in the parking lot is more difficult. Sometimes creature comforts are compromised by growth.

4. Loss of power. New people in a church can mean that power bases are diluted. Some of the longer tenured influencers may not like that.

5. Loss of perceived intimacy. “I used to know everyone in this church. I just don’t feel as close to members as I once did.” Indeed, growth can mean that.

6. Loss of worship style. New members and attendees might have different worship style preferences.

7. Loss of worship time. Growth in the church may necessitate adding or changing worship services and times.

Obedience to the Great Commission often results in church growth. But church growth is not always received well. Some have an attitude that the church is there to serve them and to cater to their needs. Healthy church members understand they are to be giving and sacrificial members of the body of Christ. They will rejoice when more members join the fellowship, and when more people become believers in Christ.

We Labor Together With God, Wes

Leave a Reply