A while back Seth Godin shared a post on his blog called For the only person who didn’t get the joke that has resonated with me for quite some time. In the post he pointed out to the fact that there were a few people who shunned Miles Davis, just like there are those who aren’t a fan of the church you lead. Seth makes a killer point by saying:
For everyone else, though, the ability to say, “It’s not for you,” is the foundation for creating something brave and important. You can’t do your best work if you’re always trying to touch the untouchable, or entertain those that refuse to be entertained.
So here is my question for you: are you OK with the idea that there are some people for whom your church is just not a good fit?
Think hard on that one.
If we attempt to make everyone happy, we will be eternally busy. If we are constantly accommodating preferences and tastes, we will have plenty to do. The problem with this, however, is that we will never have a significant Kingdom impact. Having the guts to say “this is who we are” to people who disagree with you on may be tough… but it will allow your ministry to have far more reach.
Several years ago, I took part in a newcomer’s orientation at a church I attended. The pastor shared about the vision of the church, the history of the church, and painted a compelling picture of where the church was headed, and how it was going to get there. He then grabbed a phone book… looked at us, and said “this is who we are, and where we are going… and if this doesn’t resonate with you, let me know and I will help you find a church that will.”
This is a tough stance to take... but it is crucial for the long-term success of your church. Knowing who you are, knowing where you are going, and fearlessly embracing it helps you to fully pursue who God has called you to be. This principle is true for the people you are trying to reach and especially true for those you are looking to hire.