If you entered a fast food chain and asked for a hamburger, you would expect some meat between the pieces of bun. You would be disappointed if your sandwich looked like a hamburger but upon closer inspection you found very little beef. Likewise, the outward appearance of a church can look great while in reality there may be very little substance. On the outside it looks like church is being conducted, but on the inside little is being accomplished.
An important part of pastoring is learning how to accomplish tasks. Preaching three sermons a week is important, but the ministry is more than preaching sermons. Your soulwinning and visitation must be effective. We should desire fruit like Paul who said, “Now I would not have you ignorant, brethren, that oftentimes I purposed to come unto you, (but was let hitherto,) that I might have some fruit among you also, even as among other Gentiles” (Romans 1:13).
Unfortunately, some preachers are merely looking for a job to provide an income and a place where they can be in full-time service. But successful pastors have goals they work towards: souls are saved, their churches grow, and families are restored through their ministry.
If every church was scrutinized like a business many of them would close down because they are poorly run and offer no desirable product. Fortunately, churches are not businesses, but that is no excuse for any church not to produce something viable and desirable to its community. People are seeking something real in their lives, and churches should clearly demonstrate they have the answer.
Although God is ultimately the One who gives fruit, every pastor should desire to see fruit in his ministry. The following questions can serve as an aid to help you evaluate progress, and identify areas of your ministry that need special attention.
1. How many souls have been saved recently?
2. What is the Sunday night attendance?
3. What is the Wednesday night attendance?
4. How many people go soulwinning?
5. What growth is being experienced in the believers’ lives?
6. Are members giving faithfully and sacrificially?
7. Does the church contain young people and children?
8. Do the church services have a spirit of anticipation?
9. Is the music uplifting and evangelistic?
10. What has been accomplished during the previous year?
11. Are you maturing as the pastor of the church?
12. Are leaders being trained and delegated responsibilities?
13. Have young men and women surrendered their lives to full-time service?
14. Is there a worldwide missions program?
15. Has the church saved money for a future building?
16. Are all the bills paid and up to date?
17. Has the community been contacted by mail and door to door?
18. Are members being discipled?
19. Is Jesus Christ honored?
20. Is the Lord’s kingdom being extended?
As you consider these questions ask yourself, “Where’s the beef?”