3. We have allowed the congregation to delegate their mission to us the professionals.
The problem is laziness–theirs and ours.
The great commission–Matthew 28:18-20‘s word to “go therefore and make disciples”–was given, not to the preachers but to every disciple of the Lord Jesus. And yet, as far as the congregation is concerned, that’s the job of the ministry team, the evangelists, and the missionaries. They’ll even kick in money to pay salaries for these specially-called soldiers of the cross to do the work. Anything to keep from their having to obey the Lord.
And because we the ministers are lazy, we prefer not to resist the congregation in this and simply take the path of least resistance: we hire another staffer and tell him to reach the lost and unchurched.
We have raised a generation of pew potatoes–groan, sorry!–who do little and would be surprised to learn this is not the original plan.
4. The congregation has adopted the football coach pattern of leadership–if things aren’t going well, fire the old guy and bring in a new one–while we have stood by and cooperated with it.
The problem is our worldly template for greatness.
It happens just often enough to encourage the stereotype. A church gets rid of the old pastor and brings in a new one, and within a year, it’s bursting at the seams and making plans for new facilities. Other churches see this happening and grow antsy at their lack of growth, and so begin to pressure the preacher. Soon, they are firing him and looking for the next “star” on the ministerial horizon.
We have raised a generation of church members to sit as boards of directors in the Kingdom, not as laborers in the vineyard.