I am pretty sure the same can be said of churches and pastors/leadership can add "listening to God" to the list of what to listen to. When I was a youth pastor it was refreshing in Milwaukee to do new things. We threw some stuff out that a typical youth group should do and shook it up a bit. This new way of doing youth group lead to great growth in our youth group which ultimately led to many kids forming a great relationship with God. I am proud to say that many of them are still serving God today! I was just asked to do a wedding for one of them in 2012!!! The same can be said of my one year stint as a youth pastor here in, Waupaca. We got together a small team to dream and talk about ways we can reach teens beyond what is already being done. God gave us wisdom and it was then we decided to reach those other youth groups would not reach. We began to do x-box lan parties and many more outreaches. Within just a few months of starting a youth group with 5 teens we had 25+ coming each week to youth group and hundreds coming to our outreach events. It is refreshing to listen to God and do things that are not always THE NORM.
I am finding the same to be true being a pastor in a smaller town. I don’t think what we are doing is anything new to churches in bigger towns (at least I hope not). From streaming our services live to podcasts to online giving…these are things that just make sense for a church to do especially when much of it has next to no cost. Our most recent way of doing things will begin on Feb. 6th when our services are broadcast every Sunday morning on the local radio station. The most progressive thing I am excited about is what came out of our most recent board meeting. What is it? Throw out the board meeting idea and redo it to make ministry heads more a part of what is going on at church. Imagine that...those doing ministry being a part of the board meetings. That never happened at the churches I served at so it is not the norm to me. More details will follow on this one!
Church should be an enjoyable time for the family where we laugh, cry, learn, love and let God do what he is going to do with us. I think this most recent move is going to be great in very short order!