If you have been tracking with us over these months, you surely have noticed we’ve been emphasizing numbers, goals and metrics in ways like never before: 5000 Gospel conversations, 1500 Jesus followers, 500 Households, 50 Pastorates, 5 Churches, in 5 years. For those who are asking if it’s ok for us to put so much emphasis on numbers, here’s my answer: righteousness is often found between two extremes we must avoid. As for numbers:
Putting too much emphasis on numbers could lead to ...
- pandering to people pleasing; entertaining crowds to artificially pump up our numbers
- our pastors becoming vulnerable to sins of pride and ego — gaining a false-gospel sense of justification, status or worth based on increased numbers
Not putting enough emphasis on numbers could lead to …
- a lack of purpose and intentionality in what we do
- forgetting that God uses partners, “means,” to accomplish His will.
LFA’s path forward must avoid both extremes. Here’s what I’ve learned over the years. In the righteous things God asked me to do, I was changed once I set a target, a clear picture, to help me know where I was going and what successful arrival would look like. I didn’t always end up where I thought, but because of that initial step, I was empowered to go where God wanted me to end up.
Let’s pray God will help us live in the righteous tension that avoids extremes.
Pastor Nate (nhoward@LFAchurch.org)