Natural Church Development is a way of measuring the health or quality of a church. By using a carefully prepared questionnaire with 30 members of a church, the survey will determine the health of your church in 8 critical areas.
These Quality Characteristics are universally used in building healthy churches! Empowering Leadership Gift-oriented Ministry Passionate Spirituality Effective Structures Inspiring Worship Services Holistic Small Groups Need-oriented Evangelism Loving Relationships
The Minimum Factor Imagine a barrel with eight staves, (see the graphic above) each representing the eight Quality Characteristics. The staves in the barrel represent the score of the 8 Quality Characteristic. With this analogy, you can only fill the barrel to the level of the lowest stave. So to increase the capacity of the barrel, we must increase the height of the lowest stave.
Now focusing on the Minimum Factor does not mean that we don’t pay attention to the other seven areas. As stated before, all eight characteristics are vitally important to healthy growing churches. Focusing on the Minimum Factors helps us to set timely priorities. Since all eight areas can’t be worked on with the same amount of energy and concentration, we need to find areas, which will yield the greatest long-range return on our investments. Remember, Minimum Factors can change quickly—especially when there is a conscious attempt to improve on this one area. [Minimum Factor]
The All-by-Itself-Principle The secret of growing churches does not consist in pushing or pulling the church in human strength and efforts—but in releasing and developing the potential God himself uses to build his church. Then growth occurs all by itself!
This is what the kingdom of God is like. A man scatters seed on the ground. Night and day, whether he sleeps or gets up, the seed sprouts, and grows; though he does not know how. All by itself the soil produces grain—first the stalk, then the head, and then full kernel in the head. As soon as the grain is ripe, he puts the sickle to it, because the harvest has come. Mark 4:26-29
The church is designed by God to grow, so growth happens automatically if we remove the obstacles that prevent growth.
NCD Process We have developed a change process which will help you address your Minimum Factor. The NCD Process will assist you in developing relevant goals and a plan to see the health of your church increase.
Step 1 Prepare Prepare your church to engage in the total NCD Process. Getting leadership buy-in, mobilizing intercessors and choosing a Church Health Team are all a part of this step.
Step 2 Diagnose Diagnose the health of your church. This step begins with taking the survey followed by an in-depth analysis of your Minimum Factor. It concludes with identifying 3-5 key issues to address.
Step 3 Plan Plan to address your Minimum Factor. In this step the Church Health Team will develop a strategic plan to address your 3-5 key issues identified in Step 2.
Step 4 Implement Implement the strategic plan developed in Step 3. Staying focused on carrying out the plan and overcoming obstacles along the way will be the task of the Church Health Team.
Step 5 Evaluate Evaluate the process you used and the results of your effort. Use the Biotic Principles to determine increased health in you Minimum Factor then plan to re-take the survey.
A trained Coach is enlisted to help with the process. 85% of the churches who follow the process and work with a trained coach show growth qualitatively and quantitatively. Those who do not utilize the assistance of a coach, show significantly less improvement.
For more information or to get started, contact Pastor Mike Claypool at Carolina Ministries at 803-493-2683