Lately I’ve been thinking a lot about the nature of small congregations. Partly because of certain issues that we often face (i.e., the challenge of recruiting and mentoring leaders), but also because I continue to read Kennon L. Callahan’s, Small, Strong Congregations (Jossey-Bass, 2000). This has been a very helpful book. As I read it, I’m feeling guided and encouraged as to what a small, strong congregation looks like, and what we need to become. For example, listen to this quote in the context of the challenge to recruit and mentor new leaders: “Small, strong congregations never have enough money. They never have enough leaders. With imagination and creativity, they are always giving away more than they have. The result is that God supplies new leaders and new resources to match the mission. The stronger the mission, the more leaders the congregation develops. The stronger the mission, the more generously God helps us discover the resources to share the mission.” (pp. 204-205) I find such words instructive and inspiring. As I read Callahan, I’m feeling increasingly encouraged at who we are as a small, strong church, and who we are becoming as a small, strong church. And I look forward to more growth and strength as we continue to worship the Lord together, seek his will, and discern the one excellent mission that he has for us in our second decade of life.
This conversation reminds me of a prayer that I sometimes pray as a leader of a local church. I invite you to pray it with me. . .