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May 29, 2007

Bad Can Push Us To Be Great

Sometime "bad things" happen to good people that create in good people the desire to be great people. The current decline in membership and church attendance within the United Methodist Church has been bad news to us and for some there is a feeling that God has left us. And believe me when church folk believe that God has left us for others there is no worse thing that could happen to us. I am reminded of a quote from the book Good to Great written by Jim Collins. Collins writes, “Good is the enemy of great.” It is because so many of us settle for just being good that God sometimes has to allow the consequences of our behavior to come home to trouble us. It is often difficulty, discomfort and pain that push us to move when we would prefer not to move. But the discomfort of declining membership, declining attendance, lost of influence and declining resources have given birth to feelings of defeat, depression, disunity, and despair. This discomfort has given rise to some brave movement within the United Methodist Church to set a goal of staring 350 new churches per year. New congregational development is one of the key elements that we must embrace as a faithful response to the Great Commission. It is not something we do to insure our survival. It is our realization and confession that we have not been faithful to Jesus' command "...to go and make disciples of all nations. This will not be easy but we are not in this to do easy work we are in this to be faithful followers of the Resurrected Christ. I am hopeful and optimistic that we can find our way forward.

Posted by Bishop at May 29, 2007 01:24 PM