As usual, Andy Stanley closes out the Catalyst Atlanta conference. Even though we saw Andy at the beginning session, it’s always fun to hear him again at the end of the Catalyst Conference.
Andy began by talking about Trip and Tyler. They used to work for him at the church but they went off on their own. But Andy doesn’t think about it as losing people but as launching people.
Steps To Bring About Organizational Change
1. Craft a laser-focused vision statement – This allows you to put out a statement to your organization and let them know what your organization is all about. Without a clear-cut vision statement, organizations flounder because no one knows what the purpose is.
Everything will become centered around this vision. From the beginning to the end of the organization, people will have something to follow.
2. Cast the laser-focused vision over and over – You may think people will get sick and tired of hearing the vision statement. Truth be told, they will. But we’ve got to make sure they KNOW the vision.
3. Organize to your vision statement – With your vision statement, you’ve got to begin putting resources to what you’ve said your vision statement is. Without the push towards your vision, you won’t go towards your vision.
You weren’t giving something up. You found something better.
The worst place to begin the conversation about change is about the change. You fail at giving them a taste of something better.
3 Things We Should Change In The Local Church
Because we love the church, we know things must change. Let’s dig in..
1. The church should be the safest place on the planet for students to talk about anything: There are topics that are scary to us as adults. I’m not sure why. Yet students are open and willing to talk about anything. Don’t be scared to talk about the scary topics like drug use or same-sex attraction.
Personally, in our church, we’ve encountered these issues. We’ve seen students who were attracted to the same sex or struggled with drug abuse. We’ve seen the students hearts sink as we were hesitant to discuss these hot button issues. Don’t be scared to discuss these issues. They’re dealing with them. We need to discuss them.
Now, this is not saying those things are right. But they’re out there in our culture. We can’t ignore what’s happening and our youth are experiencing.
2. The church must stop expecting outsiders to act like insiders when insiders are acting like outsiders: This is funny because it’s something Pam and I firmly believe. There’s scripture to backup this claim.
Check out 1 Corinthians 12-15
When people don’t believe in the Bible or what Jesus said, we can’t hold them to the standards of the Bible. The standards are for the body of Christ.
And then, far too often, the body of Christ doesn’t live up to the standards of the Bible. The very people who are claiming to believe what the Bible says have wandered off course and don’t act like the believers they are.
Jesus doesn’t take sides. Jesus takes over
We can’t dumb down what is clear in the Bible. That weakens the message of Christ.
As long as we’re looking for loopholes in the message of Christ, we lose our relevance.
3. The church must capture and keep the hearts and minds of students: If we claim that the youth are important, we must begin to act out the belief that students are important.
Think about what culture markets to. Culture doesn’t market to adults. They market to the youth.
Who does the church market to? Adults… 40, 50, 60 year olds.
The student generation is worth EVERYTHING.
Andy made a great point. Why do we do so much to get 6 year olds to confess Christ only to push them out the door at 16 when things begin to get tough? This doesn’t make any sense!
Look at your church. Think about where the priorities are.
Are you heavily funding children’s church? More than likely.
Are you heavily funding the adult church? For sure.
Are you heavily funding your youth group? If you’re like the churches I’ve known, probably not. The youth groups are doing things to fund themselves. Why? Why? Why?
Andy told us it may be wise for us to take our notes and tear them up. These are the things that breaks Andy’s hearts. We’ve got to find out the things that break our hearts, just like he mentioned in his first talk.
But I can’t tear up my notes. The things Andy talked about resonate with me. They’re what break my heart. That’s why the notes I took were actually more notes of my thoughts than notes on what Andy shared.