I have been discussing some of the changes our church has been experiencing. The first two changes we’ve discussed are Re-launch, and Big Impact offering.
Let’s talk about leadership today.
After several months of discussion we have adopted a set of bylaws that change the roles of several groups in our church. We shared these changes at our last Wednesday Night Live.
The three biggest changes outlined in our bylaws are:
- The role of pastor = the pastor is given full responsibility of and authority to lead the church. In other words, our church is led by the pastor. This is both a biblical and practical model.
Biblical: Obey your spiritual leaders and do what they say. Their work is to watch over your souls, and they know they are accountable to God. Give them reason to do this joyfully and not with sorrow. That would certainly not be for your benefit. (Hebrews 13:17 NLT)
Practical: A pastor goes to school to learn about the church. He studies it, prays for it, thinks about it, talks about it, and is immersed in it daily. So why not let him lead it. Let him lead it based on the vision that God is giving him and the wise counsel that he receives from the leaders around him. Which leads us to another change:
- The role of the board. The role of the board is to:
Advise and give consent to the final budget.
Make recommendations on issues of strategy.
Give wise counsel to the Lead Pastor on issues of life, leadership, and vision.
Because we have redefined the role of the board these leaders will no longer be called, “The Board.” Instead, they will be called the “Advisory Team” which reflects the role they will be filling as advisers.
- Finally, the third significant change made in the by-laws was made after much discussion which included denominational leadership. It has to do with membership. Section 4.04 of our bylaws reads:
As a part of the Membership Covenant, members will agree to a one-year membership covenant in which they will agree to:
Membership will be renewed annually at a membership class in which members will renew their membership covenant.
Why are we doing this? Why is membership now an annual agreement rather than a lifetime (or longer) agreement?
3 thoughts on “Initiative #3 – leadership”
Paul, The re-launch sounds very exciting. We too are doing a end of the year offering for funding ministry initiatives in the new year. Church Leadership Insights has some great resources for working through the end of the year offering.
I’m pondering your new structure. I fully support the concept of a pator led church but am wondereing how accountability for the pastor fits in. I have served on “advisory boards” before and have at times felt like they were a waste of my time as we ended up serving as window dressing to meet requirements yet had no real impact on the direciton and operation of the organizaiton. It would be interesting to see how you flesh out the role of this group.
Chris makes a good point, changes like these do make accountability voluntary rather than necessary in many cases. As with any authority, I suppose it could be used for good or ill — treated with arrogance or humility. In the end it simply requires trust on our part and faithful execution on yours. I am anxious to see where you take us with it. Hope we can help you along the way despite the relative inexperience (and “darkly reformed character”) of some of us. 😉
I too have found Searcy to be helpful.
The leadership structure was shaped greatly by “Go Big” by Bil Cornelius and Bill Easum. Check it out.