2019 In Review
The end of 2019 and the beginning of 2020 is a natural point to pause, take a look at where we are, ask how we got here, and then look at where we are headed next. I’d like to take the next few weeks to allow you to peek behind the scenes at Chemistry and walk with us as we gain perspective on where we are before diving into what is next for us.
Five years ago, Todd and I began having a conversation about how churches are struggling to find the right people for their team. Thom Ranier frequently shares how it takes at least five years for someone to truly become the pastor of their church, yet the average tenure of ministers is about 3.5 years. This conversation led to us rethinking how the search process is done in churches. We began testing our process with churches in 2016 and walked alongside 20 churches over the course of 18 months until I made the tough decision to step away from my role as an executive pastor to serve churches full time through Chemistry at the end of 2018.
2019 has been an exciting year at Chemistry as we have served 80% more churches than we did in 2018, walked alongside tons of great church leaders negotiating their season of transition, and have been able to witness the beauty of the right person leaning into the right role at the right church. God has blessed us deeply by allowing us to partner with churches in this way… and we are grateful for it.
We have also had the opportunity to watch our team expand. Three years ago, when we launched Chemistry, Todd and I managed everything… since that time, our team has grown to twenty-one people on three teams:
- Candidate Coaches: This is the team that spends time with our candidates, learning about who they are, their ministry background, and their search. This team pastors, interviews, and encourages church leaders who are seeking out their next season in ministry and do a fantastic job of it. I am continually amazed by the number of candidates who thank us for taking the time to hear their stories and get to know them… even when we tell them that the church is not the right fit for them.
- Church Coaches: This group spends time with our churches, walking with them through their season of transition. They manage the search, helps the church strengthen their hiring process, and get to know the theological and cultural distinctives of the church, along with the church’s unique personality. Our church coaches become a trusted guide for our churches helping them navigate the search process and so much more.
- Operations: As we have grown as a company, so has our need to ensure that we manage our business functions well. To this end, we have a team of people who love the local church and seek to see it thrive by handling the details, managing the processes, and freeing up our coaches to pour into our churches and candidates. They do the less than glamorous work with aplomb, allowing us to serve our churches well.
Each of the members of our team is a seasoned ministry leader that loves the local church, champions church leaders, leads with generosity, and puts the Kingdom first.
As 2019 comes to a close, I am incredibly encouraged by the team that God has drawn to us, by the strength of our process, and by the ways that we have strengthened churches over the course of this year. 2019 has been a year of growth and refining for us, and I believe that we are poised to serve churches even better in the year to come.