Establishing a precise mission for the church is essential, but if that mission is not given a strong framework to operate in, it would be like building a four-story house on a one-story slab; eventually, the house is going to collapse.
In Exodus 18, Moses’ father-in-law, Jethro, finds his devoted son-in-law sitting from morning till evening answering questions and settling disputes among the people. Understanding that this will wear both Moses and the people out, Jethro gives him the advice to set up an organizational structure that allows him, Moses, to lead the organization while others directly lead the people.
For the new (or old) pastor/church leader who has a desire to see their church become a vibrant, stable, and growing body of believers, Jethro’s fundamental organizational principle must occur on, at least, three specific levels. Over the next few posts we’ll take a look at each of these groups with a greater amount of detail, but for now, we’ll just provide a brief summary of each.
Leadership Development (Discipleship)
In their book, Designed to Lead, Eric Geiger and Kevin Peck rightly point out that the church should not be outpaced by any other organization when it comes to leadership development. The Church has “a greater mission, a greater promise and a greater reward” than any other organization in existence. When a church (pastor and church leaders) invests the time, energy, and effort into developing and discipling existing and next generational leaders, it is preparing for its future success.
Small Group Ministry
Whether your church calls it Sunday School, Life Group, Small Groups, or Home Groups the organizational structure of the small group ministry is essential to accomplishing the church’s mission of glorifying God and making disciples. In his book, Sunday School in HD, Allan Taylor suggests that the small group ministry of the church is the means by which every aspect of the purpose of the church is accomplished: worship, evangelism, discipleship, ministry, and fellowship. Regardless of what you call these groups, they are the glue to the relational community within your organization.
This particular ministry is a combination of multiple groups within a body of believers: youth, children, women, men, singles, college, senior adults, etc. Each one of these subcategories of the demographical ministry must be organized in such a way as to advance the mission of the church. Usually, this involves pulling these ministry leaders together and casting the vision so that they can own the over-arching mission of the church and carry that mission out in practical ways within their specific demographic.
When a pastor/church leader gets these three particular groups organized and their specific leaders owning the vision, the unique mission of that church is closer to being attained than ever before.
This post is a part of a series of posts that are written to help new (and old) Pastors/Church Leaders improve the long-term health of those places where God has placed them. The previous posts are as listed below. Once again, thank you for taking the time to read, and I hope that you’ve been encouraged and equipped with practical resources to help you lead well in your ministry context.
- I’m a Pastor! Now What?
- The Outside of the Puzzle Box
- The Work of the Ministry: 3 Questions to Discover God’s Purpose for Your Church
- 4 Needs of the Community Surrounding Your Church
- Not Another Time Card to Punch: 2 Tips to Discover What Motivates Your Church
Legal: While all opinions are my own, this post does contain affiliate links.