Does it bother you when a manufacturer designs its product so that it breaks down after a specific amount of time? Does that seem immoral to you? Maybe you are fastidious at taking care of things and tend to get more life out of your possessions than the average person. Right now, I’m writing this blog on a computer that has a battery health of 80%. It means that no matter how conscious I am in taking care of the battery, it will eventually lose its ability to recharge and will have to be replaced.
End-of-life (EOL) is a term used with respect to a product supplied to customers, indicating that the product is in the end of its useful life, and a vendor will no longer be marketing, selling, or sustaining it. The vendor may also be limiting or ending support for the product.
When it comes to planting churches, I don’t believe anyone purposefully builds in End-of-life components, but it sure seems that many churches do outlive their usefulness. When we come at church planting from a manufacturer’s or vendor’s perspective, should we be surprised? When we design a product to be consumed instead of a community in which we can contribute, it’s no wonder that churches begin to die the moment they’re conceived.
Jesus said to Make Disciples. (Matthew 28:19,20). He also said that He would build His Church. (Matthew 16:18). It appears as if a majority of the churches in the last 100 years had it backwards. Constructing/Building the church is done “in hope of” making disciples. That is a manufacturer’s approach. In order for a manufacturer to stay in “business,” they must upgrade their designs/products, continually add to their inventory, and always change their marketing strategies.
I believe there are many components that are being thrown in to modern church planting that result in a premature End-of-life condition. Over the next few posts, I’ll be identifying those components. For now, a few questions:
1. What is a church plant?
2. How do you know when your church has outlived its usefulness?
3. What, in your opinion might be an End-of-life component built into modern churches?