014 – How do you stay with a church when it changes? [Podcast]

photo credit: pastoralized.com



In this episode, I answered a listener question.  Carmen asked, “How do you stay with a church when it changes?  How do you stay loyal?”




Since this podcast is directed to the church and church leaders, my answer is an attempt to do two things:

  • To help church leaders understand the mindset of church members struggling with change
  • To help church members understand the motivations behind some of the changes


Reflections on the Issue

  • “Living things grow and growing things change.” – The alternative to change is death.
  • Change can result in a sense of instability and disequilibrium
  • Accept the reality than change is inevitable
  • Explore the deeper issue:  What are the specific changes that are resulting in the personal struggle?
    • Personnel?
    • Systemic or structural?
    • Ministry focus?
  • Identify the personal cost of the change?
  • Identify the corporate cost of the change for the church? (Bigger picture)
  • Identify the cost of NOT changing?
  • Ask, “Am I willing to risk the experience of personal discomfort for the sake or reaching others?”
  • “Good leadership is the ability to offend people at a pace they can handle” – What is the right pace of change?
  • The question of loyalty:  To what or whom are you loyal?
    • A specific structure?
    • Specific leadership?
    • Specific ministry focus?
    • A local expression of the Body of Christ navigating a changing world together?
  • For leaders:  are you as loyal to the Body as you are asking each member to be?


Good leadership is the ability to offend people at a pace they can handle. Click To Tweet


A Plea

When you experience a sense of personal discomfort and disequilibrium from change, please go and have a respectful, loving, and grace-filled conversation with your church leaders.  Don’t leave the church without having that conversation.


Resources Referenced:

Who Stole My Church: What to do when the church you love tries to enter the 21st Century (Gordon McDonald)

Keith Cooper (Guitar Music)


To comment on this episode or leave a question for a future episode:

1. Comment section below

2. Email: contactgerrylewis@gmail.com

3. Voicemail: 817-929-0643

4. Direct tweet @drgerrylewis


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