Yesterday I attended a Jon Acuff breakout here at the Orange Conference in Atlanta, he talked about strategy. It was short and sweet, and to the point…with the
occasional jokes of course. Jon has a great way of weaving authentic truth into his entertaining messages. I walked away with two nuggets of truth I’d like to share with you.
Strategy forces you to acknowledge the limits.
Many times we believe that the sky is the limit. And guess what? As leaders we are guilty for aiming at the sky. When we don’t hit the sky we’ve been chasing after, we feel as if we have failed. It’s time we consider our strategy and understand it has limits. A strategy encompasses a unique DNA that “should” help us better focus on what we are saying NO to. The word NO can be interpreted as a bad word, an uncomfortable word or even discouraging about what you can’t do. However, when we learn to say NO to good things we will begin to understand what it looks like to acknowledge our limits. This will help us remain faithful to our strategy and execute the desired outcome.
Bigger isn’t better, better is better.
I’ve had the privilege of touring many churches over the past few years. Some with bigger buildings, bigger youth groups, others with bigger budgets and bigger staff. What have I learned? Bigger isn’t better, better is better. The high school ministry I lead is actually historically smaller than back in the hay-day when it was huge. Nonetheless, I’m told often by past leaders, previous students and current staff that our ministry is healthier than it ever was before. Our team has worked hard to put a Christ following adult if not two in the life of every teenager. When you do that, things get better. We also shifted the mentality of not just getting students plugged into a program, we wanted them to be part of something greater. 50% of our students volunteer in the church on Sunday mornings, this helps make our church a better place and gives the student a place to belong in the church beyond high school program. If you are considering simply program attendance you will miss it. Bigger isn’t better, better is better.