Seven Questions to Assist Your Church & Personal Life

Seven Questions to Assist Your Church & Personal Life

Our last post pertained to church health and asked the question Is your church a healthy church? Today’s post lists seven questions that church members can answer individually or work together in a corporate setting. These seven questions are not designed to give a complete review or summation of the church’s health or the needs of the church. They are designed to assist church leaders in understanding the spiritual and physical commitment level of church members. The design is also to assist church members individually in assessing their own strengths and commitment level to the church.

The first question is a fairly broad based question. However, each answer given by church members should, and in most cases will, lead to the Great Commission. If you are part of a New Testament, Bible believing church the God-given purpose for your church is to fulfill The Great Commission. How that is accomplished varies according to the strengths and context of each individual church. You should not try to copy what someone else is doing. Instead, capture the principles behind their ministry endeavors. Then you can look to apply your church strengths along with that principle to come up with the ministry endeavor God desires for you. Again, it all leads back to The Great Commission. If any item, event, or article of ministry is not leading us to fulfill The Great Commission, then, in my opinion, we need to seriously look again at why we are undertaking this ministry endeavor.

The second question is a subjective one. It calls on the individual to answer from his or her perspective. A person who has had the church rally around her during a troubling time with a teenage son will likely praise the church and give a high score for question two. On the other hand, a person in the same church who felt abandoned and alone going through a divorce may give the same church a low score. This is the nature of subjective questions. They are based on each respondent’s personal perspective.

The third question is subjective as well. However, this question should be used to spark an objective discussion. When a list is compiled of perceived strengths a discussion can ensue as to whether each of these strengths is being used to fulfill The Great Commission – our purpose. If it is not being used to truly fulfill the Great Commission, can it be used in a way to fulfill The Great Commission?

Question four is both subjective and objective. Each respondent will render an answer based on his or her perspective making it subjective. Each answer must be considered by the body of believers as an opportunity for spiritual growth of the church, making it objective.

The final three questions turn the assessment to a personal level for each person participating. Using the responses of these three questions church leaders can learn the level of commitment, the perceived hurdles of individuals, and areas of needed equipping. Then leaders can begin developing strategies to both strengthen the body and to more effectively fulfill The Great Commission.

Use these questions to facilitate a church strengthening assessment in your congregation. Pray leading up to the assessment, pray as you enter the assessment meeting time and following the session as well. For more on this assessment and to have George Yates administer this for your congregation email me at George Yates and see more resources at SonC.A.R.E. Ministries website.

Your perspective is needed to understand the needs of our church. In all honesty and sincerity answer questions 1-7.

1. In your opinion, what is the purpose of the church? _______________________________________________________________

2. How is our church doing at fulfilling this purpose?

1—2—3—4—5—6—7—8—9—10

3. What are our strengths in fulfilling this purpose?

___________________________________________________________________

4. Where do we need strengthening?

___________________________________________________________________

5. My greatest hurdle in helping the church is…?

_____________________________________________________________

6. To assist me in becoming a fully mature disciple of Christ the church could ________________________________________________________

7. On a scale of 1-10, I am open to growing as a Christian and serving in and through this church?             1—2—3—4—5—6—7—8—9—10

Is Your Church a Healthy Church?

From your perspective, how healthy do you perceive your church to be? To answer this question you must first have a baseline of what constitutes a healthy church. If you attend a Bible believing New Testament church then your baseline is found in the pages of scripture, The New Testament in particular. Researchers tell us today that 80-90% of our churches are either plateaued or declining. Ninety percent (90%) of our churches are not growing. That is a huge statistic that should cause concern in our hearts.

Many people believe the church they attend is fine and healthy. Yet if the above statistic is true then at best only 10% of church goers would be correct in believing their church is okay or healthy. It is extremely likely your church has health issues. I believe the health of a church is demonstrated in at least four areas. I also believe each builds off of the previous. In other words the first one will be evidenced in the lives of church members and each of the following three areas will be outcomes of the previous ones.

The first is spiritual maturation. If you and I (as church members) are growing spiritually both as individuals and corporately as a church body we will experience church health and growth, spiritual maturity. Am I and the people in my congregation farther along in my (our) personal spiritual walk than one year ago? (Do I have a deeper desire for studying God’s Word and serving Him this year?) If I and each one are not committed to individual spiritual growth we cannot expect to grow corporately as a spiritual body.

However, when spiritual growth is being experienced in our lives it will be evidenced in two ways. Our commitment to serving and spiritually sharing with others will always increase. When this happens we will see as a natural (spiritual) outcome, ministry expansion.

Ministry expansion is the second area of demonstrated church health. Too often churches start new ministries not out of the need for ministry expansion due to spiritual maturation, but rather out of hope for success, or a wish to be more spiritual and for greater numbers. In many (most) of these scenarios results are fleeting or obscure.

Ministry expansion as a result of spiritual maturation comes out of a desire or necessity. When we as a church are growing spiritually we realize the need for more, new Bible study units (classes), additional worship services, more true discipleship practice opportunities. There is a need for more due to a longing in the hearts for even deeper and greater spiritual growth; people are serving both in and outside the church presenting the need for expansion of ministry. It is not out of a hope, but rather a passion due to recent spiritual transformation and growth.

With ministry expansion the third demonstration of health always reveals itself. This is Missions Awareness. Missions Awareness happens when people are maturing spiritually and the need for ministry expansion is being met. When these two (spiritual maturity & ministry expansion) are evidenced people will realize and discover the need for reaching more and more people for Christ. In too many churches the stated belief is we should reach others, as long as I’m not asked to get involved. The difference is spiritually maturing believers will have a driving desire to be personally involved in reaching others both in the local community and abroad. Where is the burning passion in your life and in your church?

As your church members reach out and have a burning desire to see others come to faith in Christ, the church will experience the fourth area of result: numerical growth. In my opinion, numerical growth is a by-product of the other three demonstrated areas of results. Unfortunately too many churches attempt to by-pass the necessity of order in this process. Most churches attempt to go for the numbers first. “We’ve got to get more people in here.” Declining attendance in the church is not the cause of the state of health in our churches today. It is only a symptom. We must stop treating the symptoms of church decline and poor health and learn to treat the cause.

When we fail to put the spiritual part first, everything else we do is in vain.

For more on this topic contact George Yates and purchase your copy of Reaching the Summit.

Marine at the Bedside of a Dying Father – Just Be There

A nurse took the tired, anxious serviceman to the bedside. “Your son is here,” she said to the old man. She had to repeat the words several times before the patient’s eyes opened.

Heavily sedated because of the pain of his heart attack, he… dimly saw the young uniformed Marine standing outside the oxygen tent. He reached out his hand. The Marine wrapped his toughened fingers around the old man’s limp ones, squeezing a message of love and encouragement.

The nurse brought a chair so that the Marine could sit beside the bed. All through the night the young Marine sat there in the poorly lighted ward, holding the old man’s hand and offering him words of love and strength. Occasionally, the nurse suggested that the Marine move away and rest awhile. He refused.

Whenever the nurse came into the ward, the Marine was oblivious of her and of the night noises of the hospital – the clanking of the oxygen tank, the laughter of the night staff members exchanging greetings, the cries and moans of the other patients. Now and then she heard him say a few gentle words. The dying man said nothing, only held tightly to his son all through the night.

Along towards dawn, the old man died. The Marine released the now lifeless hand he had been holding and went to tell the nurse. While she did what she had to do, he waited.

Finally, she returned. She started to offer words of sympathy, but the Marine interrupted her, “Who was that man?” he asked.

The nurse was startled, “He was your father,” she answered.

“No, he wasn’t,” the Marine replied. “I never saw him before in my life.”

“Then why didn’t you say something when I took you to him?”

“I knew right away there had been a mistake, but I also knew he needed his son, and his son just wasn’t here. When I realized that he was too sick to tell whether or not I was his son, knowing how much he needed me, I stayed.

To what length would you go to show compassion to another person whom you do not know. Do  you have the depth pf compassion of this young Marine? Would you stay through the night, keeping vigil, holding onto the hand of an elderly gentleman, a person whom you did not know and had never met?

God places people in your life for a reason. He calls us to show love and compassion to those He places in our path each day.

When the nurse asked the Marine, “Then why didn’t you say something when I took you to him?” The Marine replied,

“I came here tonight to find a Mr. William Grey. His Son was killed in Iraq today, and I was sent to inform him. What was this Gentleman’s Name? “

The nurse with tears in her eyes answered, “Mr. William Grey………”

The next time someone needs you … just be there.

How has God blessed you recently? Let me know. Contact George Yates and visit SonC.A.R.E. Ministries.

Walter Hagan and Paper Bag Decisions

Walter Hagen was a professional golfer in the 1920’s and 30’s. His name and character were featured in a movie that I enjoy, The Legend of Bagger Vance. One interesting story told about Walter Hagen; One of his approach shots had landed in a paper bag that had blown into a bunker. He called for a ruling and was told that he would not be able to take a free drop. Therefore, his options were to either remove the ball from the bag and take a one stroke penalty or play it as it lay with the ball inside of the bag. Hagen considered his options. He did not want to take the penalty stroke and did not consider it fair to have to hit a golf ball inside a bag. So, he calmly lit a cigarette (which was not unusual), took a few drags off the cigarette, and then dropped the cigarette onto the bag, setting it on fire. Moments later, with the paper bag now gone, he hit the ball onto the green and made his putt for a routine par. I do not know if that story is true but it is a reminder that we should always consider our options before making decisions.

The Bible gives great insight into how to make decisions in life in a way that will honor the Lord. Prayer is always your rightful beginning point. Prayer is communing with God (carrying on a conversation as with a friend). Fervent, heartfelt prayer is not only a beginning point, it is THE beginning point for gaining solid godly advice needed in good or great decision making. In addition, below are two passages of advice from scripture, God’s Holy Word.

Look at all of the options in every situation. A good decision is always predicated by being informed. A great decision is predicated in understanding all of the options. Most decisions are made in life (personal and business) without giving consideration to all the available options. And in most cases you need the advice of others to help as one person can seldom (if ever) think of all the various options. This is why team decision making is crucial in great decision making. Perhaps the greatest difference in becoming successful people, organizations, and businesses is the use of others in the process of decision making.

Psalm 119:105 says “Your word is a lamp for my feet and a light on my path.” (HCSB) The Bible truly has solid structured advice for any situation you may face today. If I want to master a new computer software or program, I read, study, and practice what I have learned to become efficient at it. When learning to operate a new piece of equipment or appliance, I read and study the how to portion of the manual and put what I have read into practice, to become efficient and to master the use of the new device. The more we read and study the advice found in scripture, the more equipped we become in making not only good, but great decisions.

Seek the wisdom of godly people. Proverbs 15:22 says, “Plans fail where there is no counsel, but with many advisors they succeed.” (HCSB) Too often we buy into the philosophy that if we cannot find the proper solution and “fix it” ourselves we are weak. The opposite is true. There is great wisdom in counsel. Truly successful people build relationships and seek the advice of others they know and trust. Seek the wisdom of godly people that you trust.

Understand that you will make mistakes in life. When we falter and make a mistake we should seek the Lord asking for His grace in helping us to change. When we succeed we should with gratefulness give God the praise.

There are many more passages in the Bible to assist you in making healthy, godly, wise decisions. What scripture passages can you find or do you use on a regular basis? Tell me at mailto:glyates@soncare.net.

Are You Ready for a Turnaround Journey?

People are talking about Turnaround Journey. Some are reading it and sending me comments. Others have found out about it and ordering a copy to read. Still others are hearing about it and asking questions, good questions. Below are comments from a Turnaround Journey retreat I conducted recently. These comments were sent to me within the past couple of weeks, two to four weeks following the retreat. But first, let me give a little insight to Turnaround Journey.

Turnaround Journey is the story of a church that realized it was not being all it could be and was not growing. In the story you follow along as church leaders discover a simple process to follow bringing focus, clarity, and intentional execution of ministries leading to effective progress, spiritual maturation, inclusion, and greater all around health. Once learned, the process can be repeated year after year bringing renewed focus and clarity to the immediate needs for the current (upcoming) year.

The process uses a metaphorical look of taking a family journey in your car. The steps you use in planning and driving the journey are mirrored for the Turnaround Journey for your church or other organization. In fact the principles and steps could be used in your personal life. (Hmm! Could be another book in the making.) Are you ready for a turnaround journey? But for now rejoice with me as you read what God is doing through Turnaround Journey as you read these comments.

The following are some comments following a recent Turnaround Journey retreat. To find out how your church or organization can experience the same type of retreat contact George Yates at glyates@soncare.net or 859-481-2450.

Thank you for the follow-up.  We have started implementing some of the tools you introduced us to.  The staff is now doing 2 minute reviews and are beginning to see the benefits of knowing what others are doing.  Also, we introduced to our leadership team the Elder Ministry Partnership, OG  (Overarching Goal) and church’s vision.  It was received well by the team…

The retreat was beneficial because you guided without taking over. You allowed us to work through what was important to us, but knew when to engage if we were veering too far off.  I believe you assisted us in revealing what God wanted us to be aware of…The retreat not only identified the issue, but gave us a system to address it. Nathan Howard, Executive Pastor/Elder, Progressive Community Church, Stockton, CA

It was my first such retreat; and, I believe that I grew immensely. I learned that you can’t leave the growth of God’s church to happen-stance. It must be intentional or the church dies. I also picked up quite a few tools to help direct me and Progressive down that path. I thank God for men like you, who have the gift of focus. It is men like you that keep us targeted and on the right path. Alex Early Jr., Elder

I was so blessed and encouraged by what I heard and learned during the retreat. One of the principles that stood out for me was; that as a leader, I shouldn’t always supply the answer to a question or situation that may arise. It’s important for my team to think, discuss and talk through the situation, and hopefully come up with an answer or resolve the situation. I have actually put that principle into practice since the retreat and it’s worked well. Elder Mack Myles

Thank you so much for your time and efforts in helping us reach our O.G. as a church. One thing that stuck out for  me during the retreat was the obvious difference between a coach and a consultant. A consultant may have felt the need to solve our problem(s) for us, but you, as our coach, guided us into solving our own problem(s). We came up with a process where we can take full ownership. I felt like you were a part of us, working with us to achieve a God driven process. Thank you so much for your help and I hope we get an opportunity to work together again.  Elder Isom Harrison

To find out more about Turnaround Journey and to read more comments visit Turnaround Journey and contact George Yates for information about your church or organization’s Turnaround Journey retreat and other speaking opportunities.

To order your copy of Turnaround Journey click here.

Pallets Re-birthed

In the United States, businesses use millions of wood pallets each year to haul products. After a pallet has borne heavy, sometimes crushing weights and taken abuse from truck travel and forklifts, eventually it can no longer be used.

Now cracked and smashed, or loose and floppy, pallets are something businesses must pay other companies up to five dollars per pallet to dispose of. Disposal companies burn the pallets, chew them into wood chips, or dump them in landfills.

One nonprofit company in New York had a better idea, writes Andrew Revkin in the New York Times. Big City Forest in South Bronx takes other companies’ junk and turns it into treasure. The raw material of pallets is valuable hardwoods like rosewood, cherry, oak, mahogany, and maple.

Big City Forest workers dismantle the pallets, salvage the usable wood, and recycle it into furniture and flooring. Recycled wood chips are worth only $30 a ton. But when used as flooring the value of the recycled wood is $1,200 a ton, and as furniture $6,000 a ton.

If that is what can be done with lifeless wood, how much more can people be restored to lives of value. Like Big City Forest, God is in the business of restoration. He takes people that seem worthless, people broken by the weight of sin, and transforms them into works of beauty and usefulness.

Once we are forgiven and have peace and pardon from God we can have a brand new purpose in life. Have you recognized your God-given purpose in life? It will coincide with the truth found in his word, The Holy Bible.

 

Something New (old) for Summer

Summer is just days away. For many this coming weekend, Memorial Day weekend, marks the start of summer. Schools are letting out, vacation plans are being made, and pools are being readied for a refreshing, entertaining time in the warmer months. What are your plans? Do they include others?  If so, who are you including in your summer plans? Who will you be sharing with this summer?

With so many social media outlets it is easy to keep up and communicate with your friends, relatives, and acquaintances. Yet, in this vast array of communication through social media is there not a lost art in our society? Not only an art but a built in communication need, built into each one of us by God Himself. The lost art I am speaking of is that of personal interaction, face to face (in person) interfacing with others. Not the momentary passing in the grocery aisle, or on the sidelines of children’s soccer and little league games. But real extended time with others, quality time, sharing in conversation and why not include some food.

As believers in Christ we have something to share – beyond ball games, food, and gardening tips. Summer is a great time to foster relationships and garner spending time together with others (fellowship). Anytime is a great time but summer affords so many outdoor opportunities, even in your own backyard. And food is always a great way to break down communication barriers. There is something about food that allows people to drop some of the communication defenses otherwise held.

So where do you begin? How do you get the ball of personal interfacing rolling? Why not start where you live? How well do you know your neighbors? Draw a tic-tac-toe board on a piece of paper and write your name in the center block. Then write the names of your neighbors in the surrounding blocks (the person who lives to your right in the middle right block, the person to the left in the middle left block, then continue in like manner). That is eight households you can get to know better in the next three months. And that is just the beginning. You can do the same for work, church, and other life’s avenues.

Start planning and inviting them for a cookout or simply a glass of tea or lemonade in your backyard or on your front porch. It is really that simple. But if you don’t start now, it will never happen. Live your life for Christ. Invite others into your life and watch to see God at work. Who knows you might get the opportunity to share what God is doing in your life. What an encouragement to others simply sharing of your life’s God experiences.

Start today and I’ll be watching for that light tuft of blue smoke coming from your grill, taking in that sweet aroma of food cooking, and listening for the joyous sounds of people communing together enjoying each others company. Personal interfacing with others is so much more enjoyable than the sound of thumbs on a mini keyboard. Plan some no-phone days in your summer personally interfacing with others. Enjoy those God has placed around you!

Guest Post

This week’s post is from a letter by Larry Cheek, Associational Missionary for Stone Mountain Baptist Association, GA.  For information on how your church or organization can benefit from the process mentioned please contact me, George Yates, at SonC.A.R.E. Ministries.

I am writing to commend to you the ministry of the Reverend George Yates and Son Care Ministries Inc. I had the privilege of meeting George almost three years ago when he was recommended to me by my good friend David Suddath of the Noonday Baptist Association in Marietta, GA as a conference leader.

George came and led a “Reaching the Summit” church health seminar for the leadership of our churches. His presentation was clear, concise and his communication skills were excellent! Following his presentation many of our ministers wanted to have him to come back and work specifically with their churches

Last year we contracted with him to work with four of our churches for the period of one year to “coach” them back to health. Each of these churches had been in decline for over 10 years with single digit baptisms. I am pleased to report that after going through the process, all are healthy and growing again this year with double digit baptisms!

The process George outlines in his book (Reaching the Summit: Avoiding and Reversing Decline in the Church) is practical and gives any church and Pastor the tools they need to reverse decline in the church. Those four Pastors are now working with George, coming alongside 5 other churches in our association in “round two” of this process.

It is our intention to continue the journey of reaching the summit and multiply these efforts among the churches of our Association.  Your church, association, convention or denomination will benefit from the giftedness of this great coach and church leader!

Please feel free to call me if you have any questions about this ministry.

Serving Together!

Dr. Larry Cheek
Associational Missionary

Stone Mountain Baptist Association, Covington, GA

Every church at some point will face decline. It is inevitable. The first phases of decline are so subtle they often go unnoticed – in some cases they will go unnoticed for several years. I believe the declining trends of most churches can be eliminated and reversed. However, you must be willing to ask for help. Help is available, not only from SonC.A.R.E. Ministries, but other associations and judicatories, at local, state, and national levels.

In reaching the Summit we identify five phases of decline in churches and ministry organizations. The further in decline your church slips, the more diligence is required to reverse decline. Why wait until your church reaches phase four before asking for help? Many churches do. Don’t be like those ‘many’ churches. Pray about it today and call to speak with someone about assistance. These days most phone calls are free.

What will you do to help your church avoid or reverse any declining trends?

 

 

Choosing a Coach

Whether in your personal life, your ministry, or other organization having a coach assist and lead you to become more effective is always a plus with great benefits to you and those around you and your organization. Why not choose a coach to help you be the best you possible? However, be cautious and selective when searching out a coach.

There are differences between consultants and coaches. Not all consultants are coaches and not all coaches are consultants. To boil down the main differences use these two trains of thoughts:

Consultant – one who gathers, reviews, and interprets data, information and observations which he/she uses to advise and give suggestive direction for the church.

Coach – One who through a series of properly formulated questions guides church leaders to making well informed decisions based on information, facts, data, and observation. Coaching questions deal with the God-given resources, opportunities, and potential of the church.

The history of church consulting has been for the consultant to come into a church, spend a few days gathering information and interviewing members, writing a report, and delivering his report to the leadership of the church. With this rendering of the report, the consultant’s work is finished. The pastor now has the unfortunate pleasure of adding this to his already full plate of ministry demands on his time. In many cases this report gets placed on a shelf with the pastor’s intent to get around to it – in time.

It is my belief that a church should seek out a consultant or coach who is committed to seeing the planning and implementation processes through to the end with the church. Note: A consultant or coach cannot be with the church full time. However, a schedule can and should be established for the church and coach to communicate regularly and meet occasionally throughout the planning and implementation process. This is where a coach comes in stronger than a consultant. A gifted coach should be well versed in assisting the church in strategy planning. Consultants can give you the ideas. Coaches are trained to walk with you leading and guiding the pastor and church into a desired healthier position based on who they are and the gifts and resources provided by God.

Working through the processes outlined in Reaching the Summit, it is my belief that the most beneficial path for each church to undertake is to locate a coach who can and will commit to walk with you through each step of the process.

When seeking a church coach, church leaders should first discuss the needed experience and qualities the coach should possess for effectiveness with your particular church. Also, to be discussed is your expectations as a church (understanding these may need to be increased or decreased as you interview and select a coach for your situation.

Some information you will want to know to assist you in the exploration and selection of a coach includes:

  • Credentials – Just because someone calls himself a coach, does not make one a coach. What consulting/coaching experience, training, certifications does each potential candidate have? Again, certifications are not always the “yes” answer we are looking for. Effective and successful coaching experience is a greater indicator than a certificate.
  • The ministry experience of each candidate. (Is it varied or very specific? Which best fits your needs?) Some consultants are top notch with certain age groups or particular areas of church life (i.e. financial). However, they may not be ideal for an overall church coaching experience.

Ministry experience to consider:

    • Has he worked with similar size, culture, and demographics as our church?
    • Has he worked with churches in our denomination? I recently worked with a conservative church on the brink of closing who had worked with a consultant two years prior from a much more charismatic denomination. The recommendations in his report were based on his own knowledge base through his experience in his denomination. The result had been devastating for this particular church. We all work out of our own knowledge base. Be sure the doctrinal stance and beliefs of your consultant and coach are similar to those of your church.
    • What accomplishments in his ministry can the coach identify as God-driven for kingdom expansion?
  • Does the coach show genuine interest and enthusiasm for working with your church? You need at least one member of your church with the gift of discernment in the room when interviewing candidates. If you have a Human Resources person or someone who has studied and understands body language can help you in discerning. Observation and listening to the words of the candidate can tell you much. Is he more concerned with telling you what he can do (or has done) than hearing your story and asking questions pertaining to your situation?
  • Is the candidate’s character and personality one that appears to be a workable match with church leaders of your congregation? The most effective church coaches are confident, but humble understanding they are not the “savior” for your church.

This is only a beginning point, an introduction to exploring the possibilities and selecting a coach to assist your church through the Vigorous Face to Face Summit With Reality and the ensuing planning and implementation processes to a healthy and growing congregation for God. Certainly one place to look is within your denominational entities and judicatories (local, district, state and national organizations within your denomination).

For more information selecting a coach to work with you or your church contact George Yates and purchase your copy of Reaching the Summit: Avoiding and Reversing Decline in the Church.

 

Making Good Decisions

Success comes by making a series of good decisions, one good decision at a time. Notice it is not only one decision and not one good decision. It is one good decision at a time. Success comes after a progression of making one good decision following a previous good decision following other good decisions. Success rarely if ever comes from one decision. Jim Collins in his book Good to Great says, “You absolutely cannot make a series of good decisions without first confronting the brutal facts.”

Perhaps you have seen video clips in movies or on television shows of a steam engine train taking off from a depot. You hear the water boiling and see the steam rolling and at the right time the engineer pulls a lever, and you hear that steam being transformed into energy, energy to turn the wheels on the train. It is then that you see the wheels turn slightly and ever so slowly. The engineer pulls again, the engine bellows, and the wheels turn again slightly and slowly. Another pull, and the wheels turn a little more and slightly faster. The actions are repeated again and again. Each time the wheels move with slightly more speed than the last. All the wheels turn simultaneously and each turn is faintly greater than the one before, each turn building momentum from the previous turn.

This process continues until the train is moving and generating speed and seemingly pulling its own weight. Momentum has kicked in and the train will continue to move down the track, headed for its destination. The wheels are now turning with ease. The engineer’s job now becomes maintaining the correct pressure on the boiler and as needed convert that steam into the energy needed to maintain the forward motion and speed of the train.

To make any significant change in your life or to reverse the decline in a church/organization requires not one turn of the ignition, but a series of good decisions, each one building upon previous decisions. Like the steam engine locomotive, it takes time and energy exercised in the right direction. All of the train’s wheels are always pulling in the same direction. To get the train moving, each blast of energy is pushing the wheels in the same direction. Every blast is for forward motion.

Develop a process for making decisions that will positively impact the forward progress of your life or the life of your church. Who will be involved in the decision making process? Who will be impacted by the decision? Even making decisions for your personal life impacts the lives of others. What could the decision impact negatively? What could the decision impact positively?

Three questions you can always ask in any decision making process:

  1. What is the absolute best outcome if we make this decision?
  2. What is the absolute worst outcome if we make this decision?
  3. Am I (Are we) willing to live with the answer to number 2?

Making good decisions to change your life and bring about a positive results can be a complete reformation for your life and he life of your organization. Learn to practice good decision making. Turn those negative, declining trends around and watch the positive results begin to reveal themselves.

For more information on Making Good Decisions contact George Yates and pick up your copy of Reaching the Summit.