It Sounds Corporate, But It’s Actually a Spiritual Experience — An Energizing One.
Sometimes when I tell church leaders what we do, they raise their eyebrows. When I show them some strategic planning charts, they tilt their heads. But when church leaders participate in a Strategic Planning Retreat, they smile.
The process, the charts, the whiteboard—they’re just tools. Prayer, open hearts and hunger for seeing God’s will done in your church are what make the tools work.
This is what strategic planning actually feels like:
It feels like renewed spiritual energy and passion for the work and the community
to which God has called you.
It feels like clarity: on where you are headed and on what your next steps are.
It feels like a defining moment in the life of your church.
It feels like the most focused and unified your team has ever been.
It feels like a fresh start.
It feels like hope, instead of stuck.
It also feels, at times, mentally taxing, spiritually challenging, emotionally draining. You’re doing the hard work. You’re asking the hard questions. You’re relying on the wisdom of God to lead your church forward, instead of accepting the status quo and the way you’ve always done things.
On our part, we promise to bring hope, come spiritually and practically prepared to serve you, and acknowledge your church’s uniqueness. We also make five other promises to every church we serve. We don’t tell you who to be or what to do, but through this process, we will help you discover where God’s called you to go and how you’re going to get there.
In their own words, some church leaders we’ve had the opportunity to serve explained what strategic planning was like for them. If you’re feeling stuck, consider their observations.
What really stuck out to us was the fact they were not merely leaning on their own wisdom
but they took time to pray about what would be God’s plan for Parker Hill. The consultants
were available in the process to answer questions and guide our team.
— Steve Brown, Parker Hill Community Church, Scranton, PA
Clear, helpful and practical, we did what I thought would take us months (create a new vision)
in just two days.
— Carey Nieuwhof, Connexus Church, Barrie, ON
I strongly believe the overall experience is a defining moment for us. The traction gained because of the collective process is HUGE.
— Tim Celek, The Crossing, Costa Mesa, CA
As a team we were quite nervous and really did not know what to expect. The way we were guided through the process, which helped uncover our desire for the ministry, was exceptional.
— Billy Ritchie, Milton Keynes Christian Centre, Milton Keynes, UK