The title is not click bait. I’m for real.
I used to have “butts and bucks” disease. Have you ever heard about it? It’s a real thing. It’s a condition that usually rears its head on Monday mornings. It’s when the first 2 questions a pastor asks on Monday morning is:
- “How many people were at church yesterday?”
- “How much money was in the offering?”
Basically, how many butts are in seats, and how many bucks are in the offering bucket?
I’m sure there are lots of good reasons why those 2 questions are important. They aren’t necessarily bad questions. But they are NOT metrics of church health. The answers to these questions USUALLY breed discontentment with church leaders. I never saw Peter or Paul in the Bible ask “what was the attendance today?” or “Did we get a good offering?” Instead, Paul says things like Philippians 4:11-12. Desiring to be more like Paul, I recently STOPPED asking those Monday morning questions.
I currently do not know how many people were at church this past Sunday. I don’t know what our average attendance is right now. I don’t know what our income was. I don’t even know what our income “should” be. (Somebody that I trust DOES KNOW and DOES care. It’s just not me right now.)
I’m content with 50 or 500 people at church. I’m content with $100 or $100,000 dollars in the offering bucket. My identity is NOT wrapped around BUTTS in seats or BUCKS in the bank.
I’m NOT CONTENT with knowing that many of my personal friends will die and live apart from Jesus for eternity.
I’m NOT CONTENT with knowing that 70% of the people in my community are not following Jesus.
I’m NOT CONTENT with having the same little group of “christian” friends who I spend all my time with and never interact with people who don’t know Jesus.
My identity isn’t wrapped around Butts or Bucks, but it IS centered around my CALLING which is similar to Jesus’ “seek and save those who are lost”
I don’t care if my church “grows.” But I DO care whether or not we are REACHING people, CARING for people and ultimately making disciples of Jesus.
As long as we are doing those things, I don’t have to care about the numbers.