Have You Had Your Church Check Up?

Doctors tell us that we should get a yearly physical to check the condition of our bodies.  One of the goals of the doctor when we get a yearly physical is check the systems of our body.  Our breathing or respiratory system is checked.  Our blood pressure is checked to check our circulatory system.  Our stomach might be listened to check how our digestive system is doing.  Our bodies are made up of a vast amount of systems that work together to produce a healthy body.  When one of these systems is malfunctioning or not working to capacity the whole body suffers and the body becomes unhealthy.

iStock_000021419540XSmallThe local church is also made up of a bunch of systems.  It is interesting that one of the main metaphors for the church in the New Testament is that of the body.  The church is the body of Christ.  As our human bodies need system check ups so too does the body of Christ, the local church.

What are some of the systems of the body of Christ?  It varies depending on who you ask but they might include…

  • Evangelism System- the vision and strategy and process for how the local church reaches out to those not yet a part of the body of Christ.
  • Assimilation System- the vision and strategy and process for how the local church welcomes, greets, and follows up with guests to their church.
  • Discipleship System- the vision and strategy and process for how the local church helps persons develop a relationship with Christ that manifests in Christian maturity and service to Christ is the world.
  • Worship System- the vision and strategy and process for how the local church plans, executes and evaluates its various worship experiences.

Those are just a few examples of some of the systems in the church.  Other systems might include the Leadership Development System, Missional Living System, Strategy System and more.

Whatever you call the systems it is important to recognize that the local church is made up of these systems and it takes all of them running at optimal performance to produce a healthy body (i.e. a vital congregation).  It stands to reason then that local churches should evaluate their systems on a regular basis and be intentional about nurturing healthy systems.

At ChurchIngenuity.Com we offer a system check up for local churches.  This is a one or two day consultation to help the local church identify, diagnose and treat systems in the local church to ensure healthy functioning of the body of Christ.  Contact us today to schedule your church check up.

 

Lessons for the Church from McDonalds

Yesterday I posted about lessons for the church from Chick Fil A, and since I am on a roll with fast food restaurants and the church, I thought I would highlight lessons for the church from McDonald’s.

McDonaldsI am wiling to bet each one of us can make a hamburger that far surpasses what we could go to McDonald’s and get.  We could go the store and buy some nice lean meat from cattle organically fed.  We could then Google hamburger recipes and mix some ingredients with our meat to season and then pat out our burgers and get them ready for cooking.  We could head out to the grill and cook the burger to perfection and garnish it with lettuce, tomato, and whatever else we wanted and we would have a burger that would far surpass anything McDonald’s could produce.  It would be scrumptious.

However, while each of us could make a burger far better than McDonald’s we could not sell billions of our burgers across the world to hungry people looking for a quick eat.  What is the difference between us and McDonald’s?  It is not the quality of our burgers, it is the fact that McDonald’s has a system to economically and quickly produce, deliver, heat up and serve millions of burgers.  McDonald’s has a system which sets it apart from the rest of us backyard grill masters and allows them to sell so many hamburgers though they are of lesser quality.

Like McDonald’s and every business, the church has systems whether we recognize it or not.  We have a system for how we follow up with first time guests.  We have a system for how we plan and implement and evaluate Sunday worship.  We have a system for how we reach out to share Christ through evangelism or how we engage our community and world in evangelism.  The church is made up of all kinds of systems.  When those systems are healthy and tended to the church is vital.  When those systems are either not present or sick then the church turns inward and becomes a club.

If McDonald’s falters in any of its systems (production, transportation, delivery, etc.) then the whole McDonald’s business is effected.  What McDonald’s and any other business can teach the church is the necessity to pay attention to the systems.  After all, we are offering something a whole lot more important than burgers.  We are offering the Gospel of Jesus Christ.  That is something even Ronald Mcdonald and Grimace can agree on.

What are other systems in the church the church needs to tend to to remain vital?