It can, however, be a two-edged sword, so keep a keen leadership eye toward balance between intimacy and inviting new people.
As long as you genuinely welcome new people, this sense of closeness is one of the best things you have going! Encourage your congregation to make friends in the community and invite them to church. Don’t make inviting a program for a special “big day,” but encourage it as a lifestyle.
To grow and multiply your ministry, it’s important to be sowers of seeds. There are many kinds of seeds to sow. Love, kindness and compassion are one group of seeds that return great dividends in time. Generosity and encouragement are similar. Which of these “seeds” are you good at, and which do you need to add?
Another kind of seed comes from thinking big and thinking unusually for small churches. For example, would God allow you to raise up several young, next-generation leaders to send out into pastoral ministry? Perhaps you could send a missionary or even plant a church!
Planting these kinds of visionary seeds has a way of extending the scope and reach of your church in tremendous ways. And in my experience, God always blesses when you give yourselves away.
God’s favor is not reserved for big and powerful churches. In fact, I believe he’s looking for humble and available churches that want to reach spiritually unresolved people and lift up the name of Jesus, regardless of their size.
God’s favor is indeed a mystery. We can’t buy it or get it on demand. Yet, it’s not mysterious. We know God wants to bless his church!
Sometimes it’s no more complicated than asking God for his favor upon your church, and other times it’s about patient waiting and continuing to be faithful about doing the right things.
God’s favor isn’t a magic bullet for church growth. It’s a divine touch that brings the supernatural into the natural. It provides life change and momentum. Favor is as much about grace as it is kingdom power. Favor is that holy presence that makes hard work turn in to fruitful results.
May God bless you with much favor. And I pray that your heart is renewed and encouraged for the unique ministry positioning that small churches play in the kingdom of God.