To Measure or Not to Measure?

This is an age old debate for the ministry world. Just so you know, I believe we can and must measure everything and that everything can be measured in the ministry world in fact it is our stewardship duty to do so.

For generations we have done ministry measurement by looking at attendance, buildings and cash. Did we have the biggest crowd this year or last? Do we have the latest technology, most comfortable room for our kids etc...? Do we have the most beautiful facilities compared to other churches around, a missions program that spent more this year than last, and have we grown our staff numbers? Take a look at your church calendar. Is it packed? Have you considered your ministry a success because you have developed activities for every age group, need or possible interest? Just how are you really measuring your ministry?

From what I see as I travel, I think success is often defined by busyness. But is that what God has called us to do? No, and it is an easy answer. Well if it's not all these things then what should you measure to determine if God is honored and pleased with the outcome of your efforts? Should we measure holiness? Yes, holiness is measured by what it takes to discourage you, see it can be measured.

Let me ask you, why does your ministry exist? The answer is easily found, you exists to make disciples. Not evangelism? No, to create more funds for missions? No, bigger staff? No, your ministry exists to make people better disciples, to have them lean into their heavenly father, further this month than last.
What we must measure is how many of "our people" are becoming totally devoted followers of Christ. It can be measured by how many are involved in ministry this year over next, how many people are doing the "work of the ministry".

Granted, making disciples is hard work, and it may be even harder to measure them. It is tempting to measure the easy stuff and just assume that the easy stuff is the indicator of our spiritual impact. I fear we have been measuring the wrong way and the wrong things for years. If we would measure the right things in the right way I believe w would have a greater impact in our communities and around the world.

Tom Atema