Simple Church – Chapter 5

In chapter 5 the authors begin a new section of the book.  They take a chapter for each of the 4 elements (Clarity, Movement, Alignment, & Focus) they have introduced earlier.  Chapter 5 discusses Clarity.  They define clarity as “the ability of the process to be communicated and understood by the people.” They break the chapter into 5 sections.  They say that to have clarity of process you must define it, illustrate it, measure it, discuss it, and increase the understanding of it.

The first step in any process is to clearly define it.  If the process is not clearly defined then there will be confusion and frustration.  The authors suggest that you start by defining the kind of disciple that you wish to produce at your church.  Then define the process of how you intend to create those disciples.  This step includes not only the what but also the how.  You can’t forget the how.  Without knowing how you intend to accomplish your goal the goal is meaningless.

Next, you must illustrate the process.  People are visual.  If you can illustrate the process that you defined then it will be easier for people to remember it.  The illustration should do three things:  reflect the process, show the progression, aid in the simplification process.

Next you need to measure the process.  The authors say that “what gets evaluated gets done.”   They say that if there is no measurement then people will not internalize the severity and urgency of the process.  They suggest that we use attendance as a measurement factor and that we measure attendance at every stage of the process.  This will help us to see how people are moving through the process.

Next, to have clarity of process we must discuss it….often and at every level of the church.  It must be discussed first by the leaders of the church.  In most cases, members will follow their leaders.  The discussions should be in meetings, in small groups, and from the pulpit.  The discussions must lead to clarity and to people internalizing the process.

Lastly, understanding must be increased.  Understanding comes from familiarity.  Most people learn best by repetition.   You will know when people have gotten it when they can articulate it.  At this point they become advocates for the process.

Lots of good common sense advice in chapter five about how to gain clarity.  It think the most important part is the defining stage.  Defining a problem correctly is half the battle.  If you know what you are trying to accomplish it can give you a sense of purpose and unity.  Of all the points in this chapter that is the one that resonates with me the most.  How about you?

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One Response to Simple Church – Chapter 5

  1. Pingback: Simple Church « The Everyday Christian

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