Imagine for a moment one scenario with two potential outcomes. The scenario is simple you face a challenge. You get caught off guard. You’re thrown off track. Something comes out of no where and completely derails all of your plans. All of your momentum is halted. You come to what feels like a dead stop in an instant.
Sound familiar? I think we’ve all kind of lived this very scenario in our own ways. Graduations were canceled. Spring athletes never had their chance to perform their talents for family, friends and scouts. Summer activities were canceled. Businesses were closed. Churches stopped meeting in person. Family gatherings were stifled. Nearly everything we knew ground to a painful, screeching halt.
And if we’re being honest things aren’t really all that much better. The very thing that brought this calamity upon us is still with us. Fear is being handed out like it was candy to a group of children on halloween. The situation seems so bleak. Business are closing their doors. Churches are being split over how they handle the regulations. Families and friends are divided over where they stand on the issues facing our country.
When our situation is this dire there are two natural outcomes: crash and burn or pivot and soar. The rest of this post will address the issue as it pertains to churches but is really applicable to all scenarios.
In a recent article in Outreach Magazine, it’s been estimated that nearly 1 in 5 churches will likely close their doors within 18 months of the pandemic. This is awful to even think about. But how can we prevent this from being our reality in whatever field we find ourselves in?
If we keep doing the same things we’ve always done, we’ll get the same results we’ve grown to accept or even worse.
So to change the tide we need to pivot. The idea of pivoting in basketball is to keep one foot in place while moving the rest of your body in different directions to determine which way will benefit the team most.
Right now we’re in a situation that demands a pivot. The curve is trending downward. We’ve grown accustomed to being an organization that is all about Sunday morning. Gather together is the goal. Meeting is the mission. But what happens if we pivot our thinking?
The mission of the church never was to just gather and meet. Jesus said to make disciples. The mission of the church if we’re following the command of Jesus should be to go, baptize, teach. It’s all about growing the family of God.
If we don’t pivot our thinking we’re going to ride the plane right into the ground. But if we can keep one foot firmly rooted in the promises of God in scripture, then pivot our methods to see where He might be leading us we’ll be able to soar in ways we never thought imaginable.
Over the next couple of weeks we’ll look at a few things we can do to pivot our thinking and approach our current situation not as a series of challenges but as opportunities that God has placed before us to help us soar.
As we end this post consider where you’ve been and what direction you’re headed now. Then evaluate why your church or organization really exists. That information will be helpful as we move forward next week.