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3 Ways to Keep Your Sheep From Being Stolen

But having a mission is not enough.

It has to be a shared mission.

This grows out of a process of listening for the Holy Spirit as a community, and engaging the gifts of the entire body of Christ.

3. Be the Body of Christ.

Of all the metaphors for the church, the most useful for organizing is the Body of Christ. Paul’s description of a dysfunctional body is laughable, with eyes yelling at hands saying, “I don’t need you!”

Instead, the church is meant to engage each individual in doing what only he or she can do.

Sheep that stick around do so because they feel recognized as a part of the body.

This means more than spiritual gift inventories. It means having a role that affects the church’s life together. It means knowing that they are valued, and they also know they have a responsibility.

That’s hard to feel when church is just something you show up for on Sundays.

It’s hard to leave a place where you know you matter.

Let’s stop lamenting when sheep get stolen or people church-shop, and focus on being a tight knit missional body that is really hard to leave.

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Chris Morton serves as Community Developer at Austin Mustard Seed, a new church plant for Austin, Texas. He is also a freelance writer and social media strategist. Subscribe to Chris's blog about growth and mission at ChrisMorton.info.