"Everybody wants to be relevant. We want to be relevant personally. We want to be relevant in our businesses." —Rick Warren
I agree with Pastor Rick's words from a recent TED talk. No one purposefully wants to become irrelevant, and neither does a church. So how does a once-thriving, prevailing church suddenly become irrelevant? When you inspect it closely, it was not a sudden transition at all. There were warning signs.
After close inspection, the following list of six mistakes irrelevant churches make comes to the forefront:
1. Irrelevant churches make the mistake of resisting change. Gen. Erick Shinseki says, "If you don't like change, you are going to like irrelevance even less." To support Gen. Shinseki's comments, the last 10 words of a dying church are "We've never done it that way before. We're not changing."
2. Irrelevant churches make the mistake of having a false sense of security. Irrelevance must be combated with diligence. "Irrelevance could never happen to us" proclaim many church leaders. However, the natural default mode of every church is to drift toward comfort and irrelevance. Carey Nieuwhof said at the recent Orange Conference, "Irrelevance is always subtle but inevitable."
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