About a year ago the Ever Given ran aground in the Suez Canal causing global supply-chain issues. Have you heard of her sister ship, Ever Forward? Ever Forward is operated by the same Taiwanese company and is a 1,095 foot cargo ship with more than 4,000 shipping containers aboard. And believe it or not, it is currently stuck in Chesapeake Bay. Haven’t heard this story? Probably because it’s not blocking trade routes that affect Americans’ day-to-day life.
Ever Forward has been stuck since March 13th. Let that sink in. It went the wrong way coming out of the Baltimore channel, missing a right turn in the deep shipping channel and instead became lodged as the channel narrowed. One missed turn is preventing this huge ship from fulfilling its mission!
How many churches get stuck with one wrong turn?
The Way I See It…
Healthy churches avoid getting stuck.
Healthy churches avoid getting stuck in the minor things. Pastors who give too much time and attention to unimportant things (carpet color, how many flavored coffee creamers to offer, fake flowers on the communion table, should we even have a communion table) are mentally drained and and have nothing left for the really important things like answering visionary directional questions of the church.
Healthy churches avoid getting stuck in the past. Reliving the good ol’ days is wasted enthusiasm unless it is used to build momentum toward future direction. Ministries in the church should be evaluated regularly to see if they are still producing the desired outcomes they were originally created for. And if they aren’t, do they need to be tweaked or cut?
Healthy churches avoid letting pastors – and members – get stuck in a rut. Pastors should model for the church that the unexpected is healthy. Live a little and try a one point sermon instead of the usual three. Innovation doesn’t have to be a completely new idea, sometimes it’s just new to you.
Ever Forward is a prophetic word for the modern church. I hope the ship, Ever Forward, isn’t a symbol of your church. Don’t get stuck in the minor things, don’t get stuck in the past, and don’t get stuck doing the same old thing the same old way.