The One Church Leadership Mistake You Cannot Make

I bet you and your team have annual goals or focus points. It’s always healthy to have a few things in focus as the year begins. It’s like an organizational resolution, but much easier to keep.

I recently saw Chick-fil-A’s organizational focus for 2018. One item on their list stood out — food safety. When I first saw it, I wondered why something so basic was on their big four movements list. Have they had trouble with food safety recently? Are some stores serving raw chicken?

Then I realize why. Chick-fil-A understands that focusing on new areas of the business is important, but there are some core elements that they must always keep in focus. Food safety might be at the top of that list, hence it made their annual focus list. It doesn’t take too many cases of salmonellae poisoning to destroy a food brand.

So back to us in the church. You probably have some areas of focus for this year. At Woodstock City Church, we too have some important, future thinking opportunities in focus. But, at the top of our list is still one key element: Stewardship.

Stewardship is our food safety. Why? For the same reason as Chick-fil-A. If we lose the trust of those who support our church with their time and treasure, we will immediately begin to fail. We might be able to recover from other missteps, but I doubt we would be able to recover from any breach of financial trust.

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The Church DOESN’T Just Want My Money?

“The church just wants my money!”

How do you overcome that obstacle as a church leader?

Undo the past twenty years of Christianity? Too bad that’s not an option! One simple solution is to stop talking about money, which certainly would fix the problem. Of course, that might create many more (unless you aren’t concerned with missing pay cycles!). If you never taught or mentioned money, nobody would complain and nobody would give. Worse, nobody would begin to trust God with their financial life. Yet, when you talk about money, people both complain and leave.

It’s unfortunate the perception exists. But it is for legitimate reasons. We as church leaders have done a terrible job talking about money and stewarding what we’ve received. Continue reading…