You can't change people

iStock_000007232660XSmall.jpg It seems like every time I talk about multiplying churches somebody asks, “But how to I motivate our church to get board?”

The answer is, You don’t. You can’t motivate anybody to do anything.

I bumped into an old friend recently. Hadn’t seen him in years. “Let’s get together and talk,” he said, “We’re both trying to reinvent the church but in different ways.”

I don’t think I am trying to “reinvent the church”. I’m not trying to change the church. I can’t do that. I can’t change people. Not even God’s people.

I think trying to change people is both a cop out and an unbearable burden. It’s a burden because you’re taking responsibility for something you can’t control. It’s a cop out because rather than doing something you can shift the blame onto someone else for not changing. You surrender sovereignty to others.

I’ve met leaders trapped in the safety of religious bureaucracy free of taking responsibility who blame the “system”. I’ve met radicals who spend their energies critiquing “the church” but never offering an alternative.

I’ve met missionaries who have tried to convinced that God’s will for their ministry was thwarted by His people’s unwillingness to support them financially.

We can all make excuses and blame others for our wasted years. Or we can step out of the boat and put our faith in a God who does the impossible every day.

History is not made by timid people. Jesus said, “The kingdom of heaven suffers violence and violent men take it by force.” (Matt: 11:12)