A ChurchLeaders.com article states “Well-known church researcher and author Thom Rainer notes that the failure of churches to keep up with the population growth is one of the Church”s greatest issues heading into the future. In a 2002 survey of 1,159 U.S. churches, Rainer”s research team found that only 6% of the churches were growing — he defines growth as not only increasing in attendance, but also increasing at a pace faster than its community”s population growth rate. Stated inversely, 94% of our churches are losing ground in the communities they serve.”
Let that sink in for a moment – 94% of churches are losing ground. But what can churches do to regain this lost momentum? In a search for answers, I came across an unusual source.
This past Sunday, New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady led a historic last-minute comeback against the New Orleans Saints. When all hope seemed lost, when everything was working against him, when no answers seemed available, Brady regained lost momentum and led his team to victory.
Bleacher Report writer Erik Frenz took an in-depth look at the final drive. As I read his analysis, I discovered 16 Things Churches Should Know About Regaining Lost Momentum. You can read Frenz’s full article by clicking here.
- Churches Should Know They Will Go Through Ups And Downs – We are in a cosmic battle between Heaven and Hell. As a result, there is a constant ebb and flow to ministry. Don’t be naive or have unrealistic expectations.
- Churches Should Know Failure Is Not Final - Heading into the final drive, Brady had only completed 4 of 15 second half passes.
- Churches Should Know Decisiveness And Correct Decisions Are Needed To Regaining Lost Momentum - The first completion of the drive was a 23-yard pass to Julian Edelman. Because of the Saints defense, this pass required decisiveness and accuracy.
- Churches Should Know A Good Start Is Necessary To Regaining Lost Momentum - When asked what was the key to the successful drive, Edelman said, “Just getting it started…We started it off, played with urgency.”
- Churches Should Know Upgrading Talent Is Often Necessary To Regaining Lost Momentum - Austin Collie caught Brady’s second pass for 15 yards. He had joined the team just 10 days prior.
- Churches Should Know Removing Clutter Is Necessary To Regaining Lost Momentum – What needs to be removed for your ministry to moved forward? One of the things that allowed Brady to complete the second pass was a comfortable and uncluttered pocket.
- Churches Should Know Preparation Is Necessary To Regaining Lost Momentum – What allowed Brady to complete his third pass of the drive, six yards to Aaron Dobson, was the Saints’s lack of preparation for the pace of the Patriots’s offense.
- Churches Should Know You Cannot Be Passive If You Want To Regain Lost Momentum – Brady’s fourth pass of the drive fell incomplete. This was the result of a creative blitz run by the Saints defense. The rest of the drive they elected to play with passivity and ultimately lost. Passive churches will also lose.
- Churches Should Know They Must Rely On People They Can Trust To Regain Lost Momentum – Though the fifth pass of the drive also fell incomplete, Brady was continually targeting Edelman, his most trusted receiver.
- Churches Should Know Making Strategic Adjustments Is Necessary To Regain Lost Momentum – Brady’s sixth pass was a 9-yard completion to Collie. What makes this play unique is for the first time in the drive, the Patriots changed up their personnel on the field.
- Churches Should Know Regaining Lost Momentum Is Often Birthed From Necessity – The changing of personnel was primarily due to Edelman having to leave the game after two consecutive hard hits.
- Churches Should Know Confidence Must Be Earned To Regain Lost Momentum – Brady said, ”[Collie has] earned the confidence of everybody so we had a situation where we put him on the field and see what he could do and see if he could help us win a game and he did.”
- Churches Should Know You Must Fight And Persevere To Regain Lost Momentum - After catching the 17-yard touchdown pass, rookie wide receiver Kenbrell Thompkins said, “”We just knew that it was going to come down to the last minute. Until that clock said all zeros on it, we were going to fight until the finish. And that’s what we did, we just went out there and fought to the finish.”
- Churches Should Know You Must Expect A Lot From Your Leaders To Regain Lost Momentum – Great leaders are asked to do a lot. This was the 28th career fourth quarter comeback for Brady.
- Churches Should Know Great Leaders Must Make Others Better To Regain Lost Momentum – This is the least impressive group of receivers Brady has ever had to work with.
- Churches Should Know You Can Never Lose Hope If You Want To Regain Lost Momentum – As long as Brady is playing quarterback for the Patriots, the team will always have a chance to win.
One practical thing your church can do to regain lost momentum is create a volunteer culture. See the ad below.
The Get More Volunteers online conference is hosted by Tony Morgan and features great leaders like Reggie Joiner, Perry Noble, Chris Hodges and Derwin Gray. I’ll even be playing a role. Click here or on the image provided to sign up. I recommend you get your entire volunteer team to watch. You’ll be glad you did.