Grace Institute News

October 25, 2012 

how much does it take to move a church?        
In the Old Testament there is a story of Gideon winnowing down the size of his army before going into battle. God tells him that his 22,000 men are too many. Since when is it bad to have too many soldiers? But  thousands are given the opportunity to leave, and they take it. God says the number is still too high. So a test is given to the remaining soldiers regarding how they choose to drink water from a stream. Three hundred men are left. This represents .071 of the original number. In what universe is this a smart thing to do? But, because God is clearly in it; the conquest works.
In the book "The Tipping Point," Malcolm Gladwell states that if you have 6% of an organization passionate about the mission and ready to move, it will be enough. Doesn't sound like much, but it is.
We tend to live with the assumption in church life that there needs to be a majority of buy in to begin a movement. In fact, often we insist on unanimous support before we start anything. This leaves too many churches stuck and stagnant with disillusioned leaders. The reality is that God's call is often only sensed by a few; but if they are passionate enough and understand that God must be in it, their start can bring others along. If you are leader and convicted of a call from God, instead of seeking unanimous support from the board, ask that a small group be formed to evaluate and initiate the call. Follow Gideon's footsteps.
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Michelle Jenks

Grace Institute

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