Win Arn has said, that 80-85% of all American Churches are in decline! We know why this is and we know what to do. Often however, local churches refuse to take the steps necessary to bring about health and, as a natural result, growth.
Sick Churches …
• Are guided by griping. Like termites in softwood, the complaining of the spiritually immature can eat away at the faith of even the strongest follower of Christ.
• Are led by individual lording. People think they have a right because of their giving / longevity / office. Yet Jesus was clear that such a manner, while in leadership, is totally unacceptable (Mark 10.42-45).
• Do ‘ministry’ by menacing. What I mean by this is that they intimidate until things are done their way. These people use two key tools of intimidation: 1) Tantrums – this is more commonly known as the phone blitz. These people call the leaders who are more sensitive to their complaints and blitz them with their vile acid. 2) Threats – as they talk to leaders, they are really saying, “If I don’t get my way, I’m going to leave.” This is ‘the squeaky wheel gets the grease’ mentality that has kept many a church from growth and health. What most churches are afraid to do, it seems, is what good mechanics do: Repeated squeaks means the part needs replacing so it doesn’t destroy the vehicle.
In part 2 of this article, we will look at what makes a church healthy.
Adapted from Dr. Smith’s new book in process, “The Tantrum-Driven Church.”