After a few weeks considering the five reasons people are at your church (PLACE, PERSONALITY, PROGRAM, PEOPLE, POSITION), and discussing how each of these reasons ultimately will keep you from being able to lead change effectively, we’re now ready for some answers.
What do you do to create an environment where change is not only possible, but embraced?
If the people of your church will embrace change, it will be because you have helped them find a new reason to be at your church–PURPOSE! PURPOSE speaks of vision, reason-for-being, the “why” of your church. What are we here together to do? What dreams do we long to accomplish?
When you can articulate clear purpose, you give people a chance to buy-in to the “why” of your church. When we know we’re here to see lives changed, invest in the next generation, extend love and belonging, or whatever you believe that PURPOSE to be, people will begin to let that PURPOSE take charge.
When PURPOSE gets bigger than their other reasons for calling your church home, people will give you the freedom to change things if they can see how the change will help us better fulfill our PURPOSE.
Very few people will initially connect with your church because of its PURPOSE. One of those other five is the more likely starting place. So as a leader, you must let your passion for the PURPOSE be regularly on display. You must communicate that PURPOSE and give people the opportunity to engage it. Once the PURPOSE takes over their hearts, the other reasons we love our church become secondary, and can be changed if necessary.
- So the PLACE can be changed if it will help us reach our PURPOSE.
- We can embrace new leader PERSONALITIES as they demonstrate their commitment to our PURPOSE.
- We’ll let our favorite PROGRAMS change if it will help them contribute more effectively to our PURPOSE.
- Even if the PEOPLE change–some of my friends leave–my commitment to the PURPOSE is the glue that holds me.
- And if my POSITION changes, I will be fine as long as I can find ways to contribute to the PURPOSE.
PURPOSE drives virtually everything in a church–attendance, participation, involvement, giving, etc. And yes, PURPOSE also drives change. It allows you to create an environment where anything can change if we can see how our PURPOSE will be enhanced.
As the leader, you must be about PURPOSE. And you must make that PURPOSE accessible to those you lead. Talk about it, preach about it, model it, eat and drink it!
When people rally together around a common PURPOSE, there is virtually nothing that can stop them!