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    July 06, 2007


    larry boatright

    I think in seminary there should be a class called "Practical Ministry" and this kind of thing should be taught...with this post as a text for this section. Great thoughts, Scott, very helpful.

    Duncan McFadzean

    Scott, I think this is exactly right. The leadership team often gets constrained or hung up by thinking they have to be everything to everyone, whereas actually the responsibility is to communicate the vision that God has given them and then communicate that clearly (which is often where things fall down). I would go as far as to say it's unhealthy if no-one is leaving the specific church for another one. What do you think?

    Jeff Leake

    excellent. very helpful to pastors and leaders.


    Thank you, thank you, thank you. I'm a pastor all the way out in Hawaii. I got turned on to your blog via Dan Kimball. Thanks for this series (and this part in particular). We are currently transitioning a dying old church into a more missional-minded, culturally relevant body. It's a bummer to lose people, but your're right, it's a reality. We have to head in the direction that God has called us to, and we can only be who God has made us to be. Unfortunately that means that some will not be on board and for them, we've got to trust God's sovereignty and know that there is probably a better place for them to be, where their needs can be met and they feel connected. Anyways, good thoughts. Mahalo (that's 'thank you' out here).



    We "left" a church about a year ago. We left because we felt strongly that God was calling us to serve somewhere else. He had been doing it for some time, but we were ignoring him.

    It turned out to be the greatest decision we have ever made as a family.

    I think you are right-on. In most cases, people leaving is a win-win. They will find the church home that God envisions for their lives. At the same time, the church can focus its energy and resources on reaching those who are connecting with the methods (probably a better word, but that's all I have right now) you are using to present God's Word.

    Steve Bunkoff

    Having pastored 27 years before coming to IHOP, I've certainly had to work through this stuff. You are dead-on right. One pastor responded one time to "How is your church doing?" with: "Great, it's dying slower than any other church I've ever pastored." Of course, I was always perplexed by how I could have MORE LEAVE my church than ever came!!! It was an exodus multiplication. Wow.


    keep it coming, Scott!

    Jason Stonehouse

    Thank You Scott! I'd love to read more from you on this subject. It is very helpful and right on the mark!!


    excellent post!

    Great post Scott. Thanks!



    You know, I think this is something that is dealt with a lot in the professional world as well. I have people leave my practice for all sorts of reasons. And, like you, at first, it was really hard on me. I'd analyze ways I could have done things different, or said things different. When I think, the reality is, not only am I not the dentist for everyone, there's a more fundamental truth: People are messed up and selfish and sinful. And they will always be that way. And, realizing I'm one of the most selfish and sinful, for some reason makes the whole thing not so bad. Maybe because it makes me realize my, and other people's need for a savior.
    Thanks for letting me ramble.

    David Holland

    I'm increasingly convinced that American believers are bringing a "consumer" mentality to their church attendance.

    They identify with a church as they do with a brand. And that means they come with a very defined set of expectations about things such as "customer service." When those expectations aren't met, they take their "business" elsewhere.

    The culture has trained them to think this way, and most don't even question whether it's biblical.

    heather e.

    I love this about OVCC! You allow ppl to breathe and don't over hype things... and the fact that the church is so interested in community... I love that! It's so nice to not have to people please but live out of what God puts in your heart. Love you guys:)!


    1 of your comments was there are no perfect pastors(I think I'm misquoting you a bit here, but that was the general gist.)
    I only know of 1 perfect pastor & even Jesus Christ couldn't keep all the people happy.

    In Christ, -Gail

    John T.

    Hello from Canada

    Interesting blog. My wife and I own a wellness clinic and losing people has always been a challenge. whether it ends poorly or good. I have learned that if I keep my ego in check, I have less of a negative reaction and can genuinely bless those who go. Our Pastor had a great comment for us. There is no success without successors.

    John T.

    Todd Stafford

    With what you said about hyping things up... Our Senior Pastor always says that we can't put in the window what we don't stock in the warehouse.

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