Experiment. Fail. Succeed.

        At first glance, I tend to think Mountain Lake hasn't taken many risks the last nine years. We haven't had any TRAIN wrecks. We haven't split the church. We haven't bankrupted the church. However, I know that experimenting and risk taking are pathways to success. So I conducted a little experiment for myself. I sat down and began to talk about all of the changes we've made in our ministries in just the last five years. My list is not even exhaustive, but I think you'll get the point. Here's a sample:

  • Started Saturday Night Services
  • Stopped Saturday Night Services
  • Abandoned Student Worship Services
  • Preschool production Worship Services
  • Separating middle school and High School
  • Multiple Services for Middle Schoolers on Sundays (Amp'd)
  • Combining Middle School and High School
  • Started Sunday Night Services
  • Killing Sunday Night Services.
  • Multiple Campuses
  • Multiple campuses with live teaching!
  • Launching a building campaign at the onset of a recession.
  • Building a building all the way through a recession!
  • The "Rethink Money" course.
  • "Rethink Money" Course taught in all of our Growth Groups.
  • "Get off the couch" weeks in Growth Groups (community service projects)
  • Volunteer Orientation.
  • No Volunteer Orientation.
  • "The Pipeline" (Video Announcements in our services)
  • Shoe polish on cars announcing our services!
  • churchplanters.com!
  • church planters' residency program
  • "Kraze Campground" (Fun room for the children of children's ministry volunteers)
  • Online Giving
  • Moving away from Starbucks coffee to "Land of a Thousand Hills" even after we had been called "The Starbucks Church" by everyone in our community!
  • Leadership Community (our new once a month Leadership Vision and Skill training time for our ministry and small group leaders).

WOW. A lot of change. Looking over the list, there are about HALF of these we're still doing. Some we did for a while, and they worked for a season, Others flopped on their face quickly. The other half has changed the way we view and do ministry forever! Experiment. Fail. Succeed. That's how we roll at Mountain Lake. What about you? Have you taken a "shake it up" assessment lately? You might be encouraged like I was.