Does Your Strategy Fit?


It doesn’t matter how successful a certain model or plan works in another church: if it doesn’t fit you and your church, it just won’t work.

The latest in fashion is not really my thing, in fact, when it comes to clothes I’m pretty sure I’ve not been in style for a long time. Even so, on occasion I’ll see something I like, maybe a shirt or a pair of shoes, and inevitably they don’t have my size. If it doesn’t fit, it doesn’t matter how much I like it! If it doesn’t fit, it’s not going to work.

The same is true for the ministry strategy you use in your church. It doesn’t matter how successful a certain model or plan works in another church, if it doesn’t fit you and your church, it just won’t work.

By strategy, I mean the plan, process, steps etc., by which you implement the vision for your church. The strategy is how you make your dreams come true – (with God’s favor!)

Let’s state a generic vision… reach more people for Jesus. So how will you do that? What is your plan? You can’t have just “any old plan” and think it will work.

Your strategy must fit…

1.  Your culture

Your leadership team has a certain “bent and bias.” They have preferences that come from the culture you’ve built – (either by design or default). For example, let’s say you have a casual, go-with-the-flow and highly relational team.  And you hired a consultant to help you design a strategy.  The strategy turned out to be a very detailed and complex 23 page plan. That’s not going to fit.

2.    Your vision

Let’s say your vision emphasizes reaching young families. Does your strategy include a plan toward world-class staff or volunteer leaders for children’s and student ministry? Is your ministry plan for impacting kids and students cutting edge? Do your actions fit your vision?

3.     Your timing

You may have a good strategy, but make sure your timing is right. For example, I was coaching a church planter who had about 50 people worshiping together each week. Good start for just 4 weeks. But he chose a strategy to “super-organize” including several teams, small groups and org charts! That’s all good but way too soon! His strategy should have remained all about reaching out not organizing!

4.     Your budget

Few pastors get excited about the “money” part of ministry. But all successful pastors who lead well know that you need money to facilitate your ministry strategy. For example, you may sense God leading you toward a multi-site campus ministry. And you construct a strategy to launch a campus that will cost you $500,000.00. The challenge is that you can afford $250,000.00 to launch. Your plan doesn’t fit your budget!

These thoughts are simple enough to immediately grasp, yet over and over again I see church strategies that just don’t work because they don’t fit. How about your plans? Are they working? Do they fit you or do you need to try something else on?

John C. Maxwell
How to Manage Boundaries in the Workplace
Dr. Henry Cloud
Cross Church
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Ron Edmondson
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Ron Edmondson
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