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How to Grow Your Church Without God

November 29th, 2011
Marketing Advertising Blog — VuManhThang.Com

Some good thoughts in this blog post…and here’s a snippet:

Instead of pursuing faithfulness the sentimental church must provide a place where people can come to hear a comforting message from an effusive pastor spouting fervent one-liners which are intended only to make us feel good about the decisions we’ve already made with our lives. If our beliefs aren’t actually, really true then at least we can have a Hallmark moment, right? Above all the sentimental church must never teach us that in the kingdom of God, up is down, in is out, and nothing short of dying to ourselves and each other can help us truly live.

Perhaps more than sentimentality, pragmatism is ravaging the church. Pragmatism has led to a fairly new niche industry I call the Church Leadership Culture. Taking their cues from business, church leadership manuals are more than willing to instruct the interested pastor in how to gain market share. I once heard church consultant and leadership guru Don Cousins say that you can grow a church without God if you have good preaching, great music, killer children’s ministry, and an engaging youth minister. Cousins should know. He helped build Willow Creek Community Church and the church leadership culture. In the pragmatic church, there is only one question that matters, “What will work to grow my church?”

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Categories: Congregational Life
  1. Pr. Mark Schroeder
    November 29th, 2011 at 14:21 | #1

    Thanks for this posting! After reading the article, church growth sure sounds like the equivalency of ex opere operato. “…leadership guru Don Cousins say that you can grow a church without God”: the first time I read something like that was by Russian Orthodox philosopher, Nicholai Berdyaev who said that communism is salvation without God. In other words, utterly faithless. I

  2. November 29th, 2011 at 21:04 | #2

    How to grow your church without God?
    Easy, just tell fallen people what their itchin’ ears want to hear!

  3. Jeff K
    December 1st, 2011 at 13:08 | #3

    Having been a part of Willow Creek for 14 years and having heard Don Cousins on several occasions, I can tell you that you took his comment completely out of context. Church leaders who want a seam-bursting growing church may do all those tricks, but may miss the point entirely if God is not in it. Cousins is recognizing the DANGER, not recommending it.

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