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Holy Risk Is NOT the Same as Ministry Gambling

6. Ask, “If we don’t do this, what is likely to happen?”

Is what you’re considering actually catalytic in some way?

7. How bad could this be if it fails miserably?

8. Why do we think this is going to succeed?

9. What EXACTLY is the plan to pay for this, staff this (volunteer or paid staff) and continue to maintain/improve this?

Don’t just say, “We’ll get giving to go up.” HOW?

Don’t just say, “We’ll trust God for it.” WHY?

Are there people you are willing to ask … cuts you are willing to make … a message series you are willing to preach … what?

10. If this succeeds, what good is this going to do to advance the Kingdom?

11. Do I have the energy to invest twice as much energy as I think I’m going to?

Big ideas take big energy. Sometimes, the reason they run out of steam is because we do.

A couple of last things: My experience is that most people in most churches would highly prefer leaders who step out on faith legitimately to those who try to hoard resources. God’s people have God’s Spirit in them, which is not a spirit of fear (2 Tim. 1:7). It stinks to give week after week with no sense of movement.

In addition, people love to give to worthwhile things. The 10 questions above are meant to vet our ideas for their “worthwhileness.” They also force us to engage our brains, in addition to our hearts and imaginations.

Stepping out on faith is a legitimate part of the Christian journey and something every church should do. However, we need not put our vision in God’s mouth. Let’s make sure it’s really faith we’re stepping out on. When we do, God honors it. I believe he also honors those who obey the words of His Son and count the cost of the tower before we begin.

What else might you add or take away?  

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Dr. Tim Spivey is Lead Planter of New Vintage Church in San Diego, California--a fast-growing plant launched in 2011. Tim is also the purveyor of New Vintage Leadership - a blog offering cutting edge insights on leadership and theology and the author of numerous articles and one book: Jesus, the Powerful Servant.