Home Pastors Articles for Pastors 5 Qualities of a Small Church That Have a Big Impact

5 Qualities of a Small Church That Have a Big Impact

qualities of a small church

The size of a church never limits the scope of God’s power. God does big things in small churches. The size of your church is not as important as what God wants to do through your church. With that in mind, you’ll want to focus on five important qualities of a small church.

Here are four important questions for all pastors:

  • Is your church culture healthy?
  • Is the gospel being taught?
  • Is there a vision for reaching people?
  • Are lives being changed?

If yes, then keep doing what you are doing! We all want our churches to grow larger, but I believe that ultimately the size of your church is up to God. Your job is to serve and lead well with all your heart and leave the rest to him.

I love the saying, “Work like it’s up to you and pray like it’s up to God.” That sums it up well.

Leaders of small churches often get stuck in the struggles and difficulties of ministry. It is easy to get discouraged, but it’s vital to focus on what is good. I’m offering you five important qualities of a small church to lean in to.

Important Qualities of a Small Church

You don’t need to work on all five qualities of a small church at once. In fact, you could spend about 15 months working on them—three months each.

1. Uniqueness

There is a reason that 68 or 92 or 130 people have chosen to attend your church over all the other choices in the area. There is something that makes your church special; it’s your “secret sauce!” It’s part of your unique DNA, and you need to know what it is and lean in to it.

It might be wonderful worship, a compassionate culture, or perhaps a particular ministry that God is blessing in your community. You can’t make it up or force it. You can’t sit in a meeting and decide what you want it to be. It’s already there, and you need to discover it and leverage it as a force for good in your city.

2. Agility

A big church is something like an aircraft carrier. It’s powerful and can do much good, but it can’t move or turn fast. It can get bogged down in the complexity of its own systems.

A small church is more like a speedboat: It’s fast and can turn on a dime. That’s a powerful feature in a local church. You can make decisions faster and respond to the needs of people and your community more quickly.

You can sense what God is up to and jump in. It’s easier to experiment with a new ministry for a short time. If it gains traction, you keep going; if not, shut it down and ask God for the next endeavor. Don’t be afraid to experiment, but do keep your list of ministries very short.

3. Intimacy

Among all the other qualities of a small church, this is one of the most common things that people love about small churches. The closeness, connection and fellowship are fantastic. It helps people feel at home and cared for in your church. Enjoy all that this brings.

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Dr. Dan Reiland serves as Executive Pastor at 12Stone Church in Lawrenceville, Georgia. He previously partnered with John Maxwell for 20 years, first as Executive Pastor at Skyline Wesleyan Church in San Diego, then as Vice President of Leadership and Church Development at INJOY. He and Dr. Maxwell still enjoy partnering on a number of church related projects together.