Jul 13, 2018

How to Keep Your Ministry Fresh and Exciting

How do you keep your ministry fresh and exciting?  Let's talk about that question today.

There are many benefits that come with leading a new ministry.  Everything is shiny and new.  There's a buzz in the air about it.

An example is when a church builds a new auditorium or children's ministry building.  New families show up.  It gives your ministry the feeling that "we've just been upgraded from coach to first class."

Another example is when a church opens a new multi-site campus.  It normally creates energy and excitement at the new campus.  Families from the original campus who like new challenges and adventures, go to the new campus.  This can leave the original campus feeling old and tired...especially if you don't take some steps to keep it fresh and exciting. 

So the question is,  "How do I keep the ministry I lead, fresh and exciting?  Let's look at 4 key steps you can take.

1. Get rid out what's past its expiration date.  In order to keep your ministry fresh and exciting, you've got remove what isn't.

Think of it like this. When you purge your refrigerator, what do you do?  You got through and check the expiration date on items, right?  And when you find something that is out of date, you get rid of it.  You pull out an old salad dressing and check the date. Uh-oh,  it expired a month ago.  Good-bye dressing.

Look at your ministry that way.  What is out-of-date that you need to toss?  What are you doing just because it's been done that way since its inception in 1965 by "Sister Sally?"  What event are you still hosting because a few people hold it as sacred as the holy grail?

No one likes to eat something that is expired.  And most people don't like to attend or be a part of a ministry, program or event that is expired.  How do you know it's expired?  One way is participation.  People vote with their feet.  When something in your ministry is past its expiration date, they don't show up.

Is there anything you're doing that is past its expiration date? 

2.  Take a risk.  There is always a risk involved when you try something new.  But without risk, there is no reward.  Without risk, you are guaranteed to stay stuck.  Without risk, you'll never discover what can propel your ministry out of the stale place it is now.

Think about that bold change you've been pondering for months on end.  You haven't went for it yet, because you're afraid if it fails, you'll be seen as a failure.

3 words of advise....TAKE A RISK.

3.  Don't get comfortable.  Yes.  Comfort is comfortable.  Coasting downhill is easy.  Not ruffling any feathers makes things stay smooth.

But is that really what you want to live in?  You are enjoying the comfort, but deep down, you long to bust out of your comfort zone and be challenged.  As the leader, if the ministry is comfortable, it's because you as the leader are comfortable.

In order to have something you've never had, you're going to have to do something you've never done before.  

When was the last time you were out of your comfort zone?  In order to make your ministry fresh and exciting, you're going to have to want it so badly that it causes you to bust out of the staleness that has you lulled to sleep right now.

Don't get comfortable.  Don't get complacent.  Don't get content.

4.  Keep your creative edge.  Fresh and exciting is made possible by creativity.  Creativity comes when you start asking, "What if?"  Don't fall into the trap of thinking you're not creative.  You have creativity.  You have fresh ideas that are waiting to be birthed.

Here's what to do.  Get in a room with 3 to 4 other people and start tossing out ideas.  Emphasize that there are no bad ideas.  Even an idea you can't use, will spark an idea that you can use.

This Sunday, there will be churches that a few, faithful-to-the-end people will attend.  They will sing the same tired songs they've been singing for the past 25 years.  They will endure a boring message.  Their children will watch the clock in their classrooms, as they endure a teacher whose voice sounds like Charlie Brown's teacher.  No one will accept Jesus.  No new families will be added to the church.  The baptistry will remain empty for another week.  Decor that was trending in 1956 will still adorn the building.

That doesn't have to be your church, if you'll commit to keeping the ministry fresh and exciting.

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