I’m the pastor of two small churches, and I can tell you no matter the size of the church, there will ALWAYS be discussion about growth. Whether it’s individual, as a church/congregation, in terms of our spiritual lives or in terms of the attendance roster taken each Sunday.
We are concerned with growth.
I’ve read many times that all healthy things grow, and I would very much agree with this statement. But that doesn’t always mean we grow in the same ways. A two-year-old, for example, is healthy because they’re growing taller, bigger, stronger; while a ninety-year-old is not. Typically, they actually grow smaller in terms of size. But each can grow so long as they are healthy. They can learn. They can deepen their faith in God. Yes, a two-year-old can do this.
The struggle in being a leader in a church is to figure out which way is best to grow. I believe once we become a healthy congregation, once the conflicts are just that something that happens and is resolved and not continued, something that is dealt with, once we are continually learning and changing in our faith, growing as individuals and together in community that the numbers on Sunday will grow as well.
So far, that’s held true. As we have worked, in both congregations, in two very different ways, to grow, our numbers have increased for worship attendance. That’s right, people, my churches are growing! And I don’t mean strictly in the number sense.
We’re learning more about ourselves, about who we are as a congregation and how our congregation fits into the greater church. What our goals are. What our purpose is. What our niche is. We’re learning about what we enjoy in the work of God and what we don’t enjoy. And we’re bringing people along with us.
So the answer is yes, all healthy things grow. But that doesn’t necessarily mean your attendance is going to rise. It doesn’t necessarily mean more “people will be saved”. What it means is you’ll have a stronger relationship with God, with Jesus, and you’ll be able to walk through life with boldness.