Natural Church Development

Sorry it's been so long since I posted. Thanksgiving was great! Loved spending time with my family. When we returned home, we had no heat, so we've been displaced. Thanks to Frank & Debbie Webster for hosting us the last few nights. Hopefully we'll have heat sometime tomorow.

I've been reading a truly thought-provoking book called Natural Church Development by Christian Schwarz. It is the result of the largest ever sociological study of churches (world-wide). What Schwarz found was that all healthy, growing churches have 8 qualities in common (whether intentional or not).
  • Empowering Leadership
  • Gift-based Ministry
  • Passionate Spirituality
  • Effective Structures
  • Inspiring Worship Service
  • Holistic Small Groups
  • Need-oriented Evangelism
  • Loving Relationships

NCD is not a program. It's a tool for measuring the health of your church. They don't offer solutions, programs, or models. NCD is big on unleashing the unique make-up of spiritual giftedness that God has blessed your church with. Don't copy other models, because you only copy what you see. The problem with that is that what you see is rarely the cause of that church's success. The leaves don't make a healthy tree - the roots do.

I want to spend the next several posts commenting on this book, because it is blowing my mind. Feel free to put your own two cents in.

1 comment:

Steve LaMotte said...

We used NCD as part of a consultation process. As part of a staff, I thought it was an effective tool to help us realize our weak link. We've worked to strengthen that area and have seen it improve in the follow-up survey.