Everyone wants their church to grow, at least in theory. The growth of a church is understood by its members to mean the gospel is spreading in their community. That more and more people are coming to saving faith in Jesus Christ. So everyone should be for church growth, right?
The answer is not a simple yes or no because while more people coming to believe in Jesus is always good, church growth can also bring its own problems and headaches. Here are 3 reasons you might find your members hesitant to the church growing.
If you hear your members say something like this they are not saying the church no longer feels like it’s for families. No, what they mean is that the church no longer feels like a family. When a church is smaller, it’s easy to get to know everyone or at least feel like you know everyone. But as a church grows, that feeling usually goes away. Especially if your church has more than once service you could have members who both have attended your church for years and never had a chance to truly get to know each other.
Smaller churches tend to have an easier time having a unique feel. The larger a church gets the more it will be viewed as a one size fits all model. When your members say they do not want to lose what makes your church unique as it grows, what they are saying is they like the mission of the church and are worried that may change as the church grows and adapts to that growth.
Church growth will, inevitably, mean that you have to have more than one service. Even large megachurches cannot fit all their members into one space for everyone to worship together. And while you might think it would just be the pastor who does not want to preach more than one sermon, members can also be uneasy at the thought of “splitting” the church into different services where they may not feel as connected to one another as they did when the church was smaller.
Whatever you hear from your members about their hesitancy towards church growth, what they are really saying is they like the way things are. No one loves change and it is a good thing that you have members that love what you are currently doing. But being part of a growing church is a great time to remind your congregation that growth, even with its headaches, means more people are coming to know Jesus and that’s always a good thing.