We all want to belong to a healthy church, and I certainly want to lead one, but what are the characteristics and traits that are synonymous with healthy churches? Is there any way to really measure something that seems so abstract? This is not an exhaustive list, but this should at least start some good conversations.
1. A healthy church is led well.
When the early apostles established churches, they looked for men and women with obvious character to lead the fellowships. They appointed elders who were mature, had good reputations in the community, were not greedy for money, and managed their own families well. These leaders were accountable for their decisions and had proven themselves faithful.
2. A healthy church values relationships.
Healthy churches have a low tolerance for gossip or divisive behavior. They understand the power of unity and are ok with healthy debate so long as relationships are not splintered. They purposely live in authentic community and look for every opportunity to meet the needs of one another. They see each other as family and are determined to live life together in the good times and bad.
3. A healthy church is outward focused.
Healthy churches are always looking to care for their community and are willing to use any available resource to meet the needs around them. Healthy churches are a blessing to the community in which they live as citizens. They are a generous people who give sacrificially at every opportunity.
New Life is not perfect, but we are determined to be healthy. It is not easy just like a healthy lifestyle is not easy. We must wake up everyday determined to do the right thing for the right reason, even if it hurts. Healthy churches change the world, and I am grateful to belong to a church that is doing just that.
What would you add to the list?