Five Stages of Church Growth

I don’t like kids. Let me take that back, I like my kids…most of the time, but I probably don’t like your kids. Nothing personal, it’s just that they can be annoying and require a lot of attention. In many ways they’re like the local church.


Not that the church is annoying, just some of the people in the church. Luckily most kids grow out of it. Your church may not be so lucky.

But just as your kids grow up and go through different stages of life, your church does the same. Some of those stages are incredibly enjoyable, while other stages you’d rather skip over.

As I think about the church, as well as children, I see five unique stages we all go through.

  1. Conception

This is the fun part. At least it should be, if not, you may be doing something wrong. This is the stage where you dream and plan. While many people will be excited for you, others will think you’ve lost your mind. I mean have you really considered the cost of having a baby? Think about the freedom you’ll be giving up.

  1. Baby

Ah, my least favorite stage. While this stage is exciting because you experience a lot of firsts, it’s hampered by the number of diapers you have to change. You rarely see your friends anymore, and you’re always exhausted. If it weren’t for those special moments of life change that pop up from time to time, you would consider giving up.

  1. Child

A time to learn and a time to grow, this is the child stage. Some of your best memories will come during this stage. You become established, and you learn who you are. You have seemingly endless amounts of energy, and your passion has never been greater.

  1. Adult

You’ve stopped growing, you take yourself a little too seriously, and your vision isn’t as good as it once was. You may become lethargic and your passion may wane. You’re now much more likely to make excuses for problems rather than find solutions.

  1. Senior Adult

You look back on your life and wonder what have you accomplished. Hopefully, you realize that in order to reach the next generation you must be willing to change. You now are able to use your experience to pour into others.

Each stage is special in its own way, and each stage has its own set of difficulties. Navigating each stage takes a bit of skill and a lot of luck. Learn to enjoy it because it goes by quicker than you’d ever think.

What stage would you say your church is in? Why? Leave a comment and let us know, also make sure to subscribe to the blog to get tips on church growth, leadership, and other tips on raising children delivered straight to your inbox each week.

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