I appreciated the responses to Monday’s post about leadership development. Adrian Barker commented that he has yet to be in a church/cell setting that effectively developed leaders. In the third paragraph below I mention the example of Peter, who had a similar experience. All three paragraphs come from the first chapter of Leadership Explosion.
I believe in church growth. My core church philosophy centers on church growth theory, and I believe that God wants His church to grow in both quality and quantity. If the major focus, however, is how many people attend on Sunday morning, a leadership void can occur.
When a church primarily focuses on Sunday morning, the people feel like they’ve fulfilled their purpose by showing-up on Sunday. The goal is Sunday attendance and members hear this in many subtle ways. A church, without knowing it, can produce a grand multitude that keeps shifting as people shuffle in and out. The back door is often as large as the front door and in the meantime, few leaders are developed.
Peter is a perfect example of this malady. He came to our church after many years in a denominational church that emphasized the Sunday morning service. God had miraculously saved Peter from a life of wild living, but the church found little use for him. When he came to us, we immediately saw his potential. We asked him to enter the training track to eventually become a cell leader. In the meantime, one of our youth cell leaders began leading a group in Peter’s home. We didn’t view Peter as an attendee in our church. Instead, we saw him as a potential leader in the harvest and even a future leader of leaders.
The potential harvest workers are sitting right in front of us. They are sitting in our cell groups and seated in our pews. We need to ask God to give us leadership eyes in order to see their potential. As Rob mentioned in his post yesterday, we need to “scan the ditches.”