I have grown up in a very busy church. I have been accustomed to a Sunday morning, Sunday school, Sunday evening, and Wednesday evening services for the week. Then the bulletin is also filled with event information as well. I grew up being at the church at least 6 days a week. 6 months ago, I moved to Jacksonville, Florida to help with a multi-site church plant. We chose to create a simple church atmosphere. This is much different from the culture that I grew up in. Neither are wrong, but let me share a few benefits with you about a simple church.
- Benefit #1 – You can focus on the main things. The Gospel, Salvation, baptism, outreach, and growth. These are the main purposes of the local church. At times, the busier you are, the less the focus on these specific things. For simple-minded churches, these are the things that we celebrate. For instance, we have a specific strategy that our weekly correspondence focuses on the main things rather than 10 different events going on all at once. Also, every event must meet the purpose of the main things or simple churches do not do it. During the announcement time, we choose to focus on how God is doing these main things rather than share 100 events that are going on around the church.
- Benefit #2 – You do not wear your people out. It is easier for pastoral leadership to wear their volunteers out. This is unhealthy. When the church becomes a stress for the congregation, because it is just another thing on their calendar, there is a problem. Allow time for your people to rest and take a break from the busyness of the church.
- Benefit #3 – It allows your people to live in their community. Let’s face it, when you constantly ask your people to be at the church, it takes them out of being the church in their respective communities. We have to leave room for our people to try to reach their neighbors.
- Benefit #4 – You can do things well. Now, busy churches can still do things well. I just can remember planning like 3-5 events at a time, and it is difficult for me to pull each of those off at a high level. When you focus on one event, you can do that one event really well.
This is not a criticism of busy churches so do not receive the blog post in that manner. In fact, I appreciate those churches. This is more about simple churches and their benefits. There are benefits to busy churches as well.