The culture continues to change rapidly around you as a leader, and especially as a church leader.
If anything, the pace is accelerating, not slowing.
The question is: Are you and your team ready for all that’s ahead?
For the last two years, I’ve kicked off the new year with a post on disruptive church trends. You might still find those helpful.
It’s critical church leaders keep trying new things and keep experimenting.
Why? Because the gap between how quickly you change and how quickly things change around you is called irrelevance.
And as I’ve said before, too many church leaders are perfectly equipped to reach a world that no longer exists.
In the hopes of helping every leader better accomplish our collective mission, here are seven disruptive church trends I see defining conversation and action in 2018.
Accomplish Your Goals in 2018
Organizational change is one thing. But the key to being able to handle all the challenges you face depends on your capacity as a leader.
How do you grow your capacity to navigate everything in front of you?
After all, too often, constant interruptions and distractions keep many leaders from getting even blog posts like this read, let alone finding the time to lead their teams through the day’s most compelling issues. And, sadly, work keeps bleeding into family time. Before you know it, all your hopes for a better year get dashed.
The High Impact Leader online course can help you solve the time and priority crunch so many leaders face by giving you proven strategies to get time, energy and priorities working in your favor. Last year, it helped over 2,500 leaders get their life and leadership back.
You can take the High Impact Leader course at your own pace once you own it, but time is running out to join it.
Every High Impact Leader course member in this round gets access to a private Facebook group that features a lot of peer support along with some personal interaction with me.
With that said, here are the church trends I think will dominate 2018.
1. A Move Beyond Church in a Box
Let me start out by saying I’m a huge supporter of the local church. Anyone who’s read these pages would know that.
The mission of the local church is the most important mission on planet earth. Which is why this issue is so critical.
This year I think more leaders than ever are going to rethink our centuries-old model of making people come to a building on Sunday.
If you think about it, most churches (even growing churches, new churches and large churches) effectively say, “We’d love for you to come into a relationship with Jesus Christ, and to do it you need to join us at a set hour every Sunday in a particular space we meet in. Beyond that, we’re not sure what to do.”
That’s a remnant from a day when everything was done on a set clock. You sat down Thursday night at 8 to watch your favorite show, because you didn’t want to miss it.
Of course, for years nobody has watched any show at a set time unless it’s a live game or a live event. You watch everything else on-demand wherever and whenever you want.
Shopping happens on your phone 24 hours a day, not during the set hours of a physical store that has limited stock.
Streaming has changed how we listen to music. You don’t own music anymore. You rent access to anything, anytime, anywhere.
And yet in the church, we perpetuate a model that says, “We have 1/2/3 services on Sunday. We do midweek X. And that’s how we help you come into a relationship with Christ.”
The cultural change has been underway for decades, but the church has been slow to adapt.
For years, we’ve noticed that even committed Christians are attending church less often (here are 10 reasons why), but this is the year we’ll see more and more church leaders re-imagine what it is to be the church.
There’s never been a greater need in our culture for community and connection. The church isn’t going away anytime soon.
So what’s the rethink here?
Future churches will have a building…they’ll just reach far beyond it.
You’ll still need a facility, a broadcast location, a school or theater to rent—some space in which to meet. But you’ll need to think way out.
Bottom line? Churches who only think Sunday and who only think building will continue to shrink.
In 2018, if coming to Christ means coming to your church in a set location and a set hour, you need a new strategy.
WATCH OUT FOR 2-3