For many years now there has been a famous phrase floating around the leadership realm. I’ve personally heard the phrase many times from church leaders and business leaders. The phrase is “What gets measured, gets managed.” Peter Drucker has been credited with saying this phrase when in actuality, Peter never said this. Just because you want to manage something in the church, doesn’t mean that it can be measured.
However, this does bring up the question, Do we need to be measuring our impact as a church on our community, city, and world?
Yes, we do need to be measuring our local and global impact. As a church leader, you must be able to put your finger on the pulse of your congregation’s discipleship journey. Here are three reasons why measuring your mission’s impact is vital to the overall health of your church.
Several years ago, I wanted to buy a new watch. I was never a watch person, but I found myself constantly checking my phone for the time. In meetings, at the dinner table, church pew. It wasn’t that I wanted to know when every second passed. It was just a reaction to the thought that pops into you head. What time is it? How much longer until we need to leave to make it to the game? When is my next meal? Yep, I’m that guy!
I decided I wanted to try out a smartwatch. I’ve always had an analog watch since I was in high school but very rarely wore it due to the limited amount of information I could get from three ticking hands going around a watch face. So I jumped in and bought a smartwatch when it was on sale where I could bundle it with my new phone blah blah blah, you know the spiel. I’m blown away! It is one of the greatest tools that I have been able to purchase to allow me to monitor what is going on around me.
What’s the weather? How many steps do I have in today? What’s my heart rate? All of this information I am able to monitor and measure because I put the right tool into place. As a church, it is vital that we create tools that allow you to monitor the daily discipleship of your church. Generally speaking, you are most likely going to want to measure things that you are not measuring now. Can you measure the amount of discipleship opportunities your people are taking part in? Serving opportunities? As you measure what you are doing to make disciples who make disciples, this constant monitoring allows you to detect themes. This brings us to the next point!
As we measuring our missions impact, we are able to step back and read the data that lay in front of us. When we look, we can detect a theme. A theme is something that reoccurs in a pattern. It is seen over and over, possibly outside of the norm of what you would want to see.
Themes often alert us of red flags.
As I watched my oldest son grow up, it was pretty obvious that he was inquisitive and hungry to see where his independence could lead him. Often, he would find himself being in trouble for doing something outside of the rules or boundaries that his mother and I set for him. I would always sit back and watch for themes. Was he developing a specific behavior or pattern of decision making that would make me want to step in and parent differently? One-off bad decisions gave me an opportunity to parent, however, seeing a negative theme of decisions, calls for attention.
As a church, we must measure our missions impact in order to see if we are creating negative themes. Are we serving our community for serving’s sake, or are we truly meeting our communities needs? Constant Monitoring and Detecting Themes will allow you to know if you are making the greatest and healthiest impact on your church, community and world.
As I speak to churches, one of the conversations we have is whether we are making a deep impact in raising up harvest workers to send to the harvest field. In that conversation, we talk about the two historical partnership strategies churches have used to support missionaries. One is a shotgun approach, a little support to a lot of missionaries. This covers a wide range of missionaries but the support tends to be less financially, prayerfully, and physically supporting. This would lead to shallow relationships with your missionaries.
The second is much tighter and narrowed. We would call it a Rifle Focus approach. Looking through the scope of a rifle, you are able to see your target from many yards away. This approach allows a missions team to be in partnership with only a handful of missionaries all of who are working toward the same goal and end result.
As we measure our missions, we must become rifle focused on gospel advancement.
By having our finger on the pulse of our local and global missions, we are able to detect a healthy rhythm as well as be alerted to negative themes. Once those are in place, it’s time to grasp the rings on the scope and narrow our focus in on our target. What has God called you to do as a church? Narrow in and become rifle focused on that area of Kingdom growth. Is it adopting a specific unreached people group? You can do that here. Is it elevating your congregation’s knowledge and awareness of historic gospel advancement? You do that here.
Becoming so focused, you are able to make a deep impact for gospel advancement!
Let’s do this together! Click the Let’s Connect tab in the upper right hand corner of this page, and fill out the dialogue box. Together we can create a way for your church to measure its local and global impact and allow you to become aware, detect themes and focus in like you have never before!