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11 Traits of Churches That Will CHANGE the Future

Almost every leader I talk to acknowledges that our culture is shifting.

To reach a changing culture, the church needs to change. Rapidly.

Don’t get me wrong, we don’t need to change the message. Just the method. One is sacred. The other is not.

What isn’t as clear is what the future church will look like, and what kind of characteristics will mark those churches.

However, I think a few trends are becoming clear. Not all of these might be correct, but I think the following 11 traits describe the kind of churches that will have a significant impact a decade from now.

The wise leader is taking steps today to position their church to respond to these things. I know that’s what I’m trying to do at Connexus, where I have the privilege of serving.

After reading this list, I’d love your feedback and reaction. Leave a comment outlining what you see and any other trends you’re noticing.

Here’s what I see as hallmarks of the churches that will make an impact in the next decade:

1. The ability to say no.

One of the reasons churches don’t change is because leaders are unwilling to say no to current members who prefer things the way they were. When you learn to say no to the preferences of some current members, you learn to say yes to a community that is ready to be reached.

2. Outsider focus.

Churches that become passionate about people outside their walls will be far more effective than churches that are passionate about keeping the few people they have inside their walls. Better still, you will have a healthier church. We call individuals who are fixated on their wants and needs selfish and immature. Selfless and mature churches will have an impact because of their passion for people God cares about.

3. Quick decision making.

Can your church or organizations make quick decisions? If not, amend your constitution so you can. If the congregation needs to vote on everything, just realize this is going to be your achilles heel when it comes to making the changes you need to make.

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Speaker and podcaster Carey Nieuwhof is a former lawyer and founding pastor of Connexus Church, one of the largest and most influential churches in Canada. With over 6 million downloads, The Carey Nieuwhof Leadership Podcast features today's top leaders and cultural influencers. His most recent book is “Didn’t See It Coming: Overcoming the 7 Greatest Challenges That No One Expects and Everyone Experiences.” Carey and his wife, Toni, reside near Barrie, Ontario and have two children.