Numbers can confuse.
- We use % and real #’s in ways that benefit us.
- If we admit it, we can usually make numbers say what we want them to.
Numbers can clarify.
- Attendance in worship is a clarifying number.
- Giving is a clarifying number.
So, what are you doing with the numbers in your church? Do you produce weekly giving reports? Do you produce a first time attender list each week? Do you produce a first time giver list each week? Does the church staff see the names of the individuals who were baptized this week along with the names of all family members?
If you produce any/all of these reports what are you doing with them? Are you using them to help crystallize the vision of the church? Are you using the information to help celebrate life change?
Do you have a ‘numbers person’ on staff? I bet you do. Has this person been empowered to help interpret numbers in a way that could help us tell the story? I’m not suggesting they see what everyone gives (although I do believe senior pastors should). Rather, let’s be creative with attendance numbers, giving numbers, baptism numbers, VBS numbers, missions numbers, and volunteer numbers.
Numbers matter; only if you use them. Will you let the numbers help your church clarify the vision?