The words that we speak reveal a great deal about what has our heart. Jesus said as much in Matthew 12:34 when He made the bold statement, “For the mouth speaks what the heart is full of.”
These words are true on every front in life.
They are true about individual people, teams, organizations, and even churches. The words we are using and the conversations we are having are the best predictors of what will get our attention, energy, and resources in both the present and the future.
Take a few moments right now to ask and ponder a few important questions.
- What words are you using to describe your personal ministry?
- What words is your church leveraging to talk about its dream for the future?
- Is multiplication a part of the conversation?
If not then accept the challenge to ask an important question—How will I and my church multiply?
Asking and wrestling with this question is a crucial first step in becoming both a reproducing leader and a multiplying church. Truth is, should we multiply is not an option. The call of a follower of Jesus and the Church is clear: Multiply!
Most pastors and churches (both new and established) are not asking the question or talking about what it might look like for them to multiply. When leaders and churches have the courage to ask this question the idea of God giving birth to something new becomes a very real possibility. A simple question and the conversation that ensues is a giant step forward in moving toward multiplication.
Here are three starting points to help you and/or your church to move toward multiplication with a more rapid pace.
Start or return more often to the multiplication conversation. For the past several months, the multiplication conversation keeps showing up at the church where I serve in Cincinnati. It is challenging us to think about new ways to help people take their next faithful step with God. It’s inspiring us to dream about ways we can reproduce Christ followers, leaders, and ministry. It’s stretching us to think way beyond the walls and parking lot of our church campus. The conversations we are having will shape the future of our ministries.
Change what you measure. Moving from a focus of addition to multiplication around the church will demand we tweak what we count. Should we value the addition of a new follower to the kingdom? Absolutely! Should we be measuring the number of people we or our church are discipling or sending? You bet you!
Multiplication begins with you. Any time we seek to start something new or insert a new focus into our church culture sometimes the hardest part is figuring out where to begin. The genesis of any new movement on the multiplication front begins with you. It will happen when you not only have the courage to challenge your team to begin to ask how will you multiply, but also get intentional about multiplying yourself. When we are reproducing ourselves, it bakes multiplication everything we do as church leaders and churches.
The question is not ‘Should we multiply?’; it is ‘How will we multiply?’ It might be the most important question that a church leader or church can ask. Will you have the courage to not only ask the question, but also help your church navigate the conversation?
I hope so.
It might be a crucial dynamic in more people finding their way back to God in your community.