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July 1, 2020

Considerations for Reopening Your Church

By New Churches Team

There’s a beautiful constraint that we find our churches and ministries in at this time. I know it may not seem very beautiful at the moment, but I believe we have a unique opportunity to see our ministries not only survive but thrive today and in the days to come. The greatest moments in the history of the church have been when the boldness of the gospel met with severe constraint. And this combination has been the fodder that fuel awakenings and revivals.

We assume creativity, boldness, and innovation come from an abundance of resources, money, time, people, and opportunity, when actual the opposite is more often the case. Necessity real is the mother of invention, after all. And we know that the local church is the most necessary thing to this planet. It is His Church and He will see to it, that it moves forward with or without us, and I plan to be with Him as He does so in this time. God has been in the business of doing the impossible, or seemingly impossible, for a long time, especially when His Church or His people are involved. We have a charge to keep and a Bride to get ready, regardless of the circumstances.

One of my friends works for a missions organization and shared how the gospel is spreading through China during COVID-19. It seems that protective masks make the government’s facial recognition software unable to work, so Christians can share the gospel with less risk of being caught. Christians are creatively and boldly taking advantage of a constraint and turning it into a gospel opportunity.

I want to help our churches approach this crisis with boldness and creativity, to do the same thing. We want innovation. We want to use this time to realign, restructure, and reopen our churches in a new way for that new normal. Before you begin, be aware of your culture. Your church, ministry, and even circle of friends can unconsciously influence you, positively or negatively, especially if you are putting together a task force or team to address this. Ask yourself if you are surrounded by “can-do” people or “cannot” people. It’s actually OK, and helpful, to have a few people on your task force from the latter group, but make sure their posture is one of helpful critique and not just one of being critical. The real question is, are you surrounded by people who are ready to shift their mind?

The frameworks and tools I am giving you aren’t a prescription. I’m not telling you how to do this. They are meant to help you move forward with your team to find clarity where you are and adapt as things change and we move forward. Many concepts are adapted from A Beautiful Constraint by Adam Morgan and Mark Barden.

They define constraint as a limitation imposed by outside circumstances or by ourselves that materially affects our ability to do something. We should view constraints not as a restriction, but rather as a stimulus for increased creativity and positive change. Many managerial systems are focused on trying to manage out, or removing constraints from a system, and this book says we need to advocate for bringing it in and make sure that we are embracing the constraint using it to push us forward.

9 Considerations to Realign, Restructure, and Reopen Your Church

Here are nine things to consider to realign, restructure, and reopen your church.

  1. What are your current constraints? How are you embracing them? You should view constraints not as a restrictor but as a stimulus for increased creativity and positive change.
  2. What is your posture or mindset related to your current constraints? Are you responding as a victim, neutralizer, or transformer? You must understand your mindset, methodology, and motivations as you face constraints.
  3. Have you recently heard “That’s the way we’ve always done it …”? Sometimes, we get locked into doing things certain ways without even thinking about why. However, a crisis forces us to challenge our assumptions and break path dependence.  

To read the remainder of this article, and to listen to the entire video training with Todd Adkins, click here for the full video and post.
These videos are part of Plus Membership. To get full access to them, and much more, I encourage you to become a Plus Member. Click here to see all the benefits of becoming a Plus Member.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

New Churches Team

NewChurches.com wants to help you build a strong foundation by connecting you with top experts in the field of church planting and multisite ministry, and by regularly providing you with the resources, information, and community you need to thrive as you multiply the mission of Matthew 28.

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