My friend Shane Raynor at Wesley Blog posted these persuasive points about why we should believe in the appropriateness of church growth. I've just posted his points, not his article. So I encourage you to read the article. Its good.
Open Hearts: Developing a Church Growth Mindset
1- If a church isn't growing, it's dying.
2- A healthy church must be multi-generational.
3- It is about the numbers.
4- People need God.
5- Church should not be a safe place.
I'll be candid about a struggle that I have with church growth.
First, I believe in church growth. I agree with Shane completely on all these points. I think it is the right evangelical perspective to take.
Second, I struggle with the relationship between being an effective pastor and church growth. I spoke with my District Superintendent about this at my last consultation. I've really struggled with whether or not I'm called to be in pastoral ministry, because the church where I serve as Associate Pastor is not growing. I've come up with some great excuses for why its not growing that could make it not be my fault. But at the same time, I believe that a church should grow and a pastor should help it grow. If its not growing, whose fault is it? Passing the buck does not feel like the responsible approach to take, but if I accept the buck, what should I do? (That's assuming that I'm doing all that I personally can to help the church grow. If I'm just lazy, then that could be the problem.)