Tag Archives: stories

Metrics for the UMC: Comparing Stories (2 of 3)

Clearly numbers do not tell the whole story of a local church, annual conference or denomination. There are stories of life change that are more important than raw data. One of the challenges of collecting stories is how to report them. It is far easier to look at a graph of worship attendance at our church over time and seek to draw conclusions over time. How do you look back over time and compare stories that have been collected?

  • Number of stories?
  • Category of stories?
  • Stories of visitors?
  • Community impact?
How do you collect stories of people and tell them in a way that builds up the body of Christ both at the time and will be able to used in a meaningful way in the future?

Kansas West Delegation to Zimbabwe

Next week, Nicole and I will travel to the Zimbabwe East Annual Conference as part of a delegation from the Kansas West Annual Conference. This trip was first announced in this article from the Kansas West website – Local churches invited to support Zimbabwe partnerships. On the trip, I hope to build relationships with the people of Zimbabwe, listen to stories, look for opportunities in ministry and pray continually. One of the key questions, that was affirmed by a conversation today with the Director of Mission Minstries at Resurrection today is this:

How might a partnership be formed with the outcome of healthier local churches in both Zimbabwe and Kansas?

How do you measure life change?

Just over a year ago, I considered the difference between worship attendance and discipleship. Today I am thinking about a related question.

How do you measure life change?

I know, trust and hope that lives are changed through my ministry at Resurrection and the collected life and ministry of this local faith community. But how do you know?

This nagging question keeps coming back to me. It is important that people show up to worship. It is important that people make a decision to join the church. These are measurable and quantifiable. It is much more difficult to measure life change.

The best way that I know how to accomplish this is through story. One person that has experienced life change that is able to tell that story to another person can make it certain that change has happened and continues to take place. I am sometimes blessed to be able to hear these stories. More often I am left wondering about how or if lives are being changed.

I continue to struggle with this question. Maybe I need to trust the life change to God…

What I do know is that life change and sharing that change with others is crucial to the continued vitality of the church of Jesus Christ.

WWJBlog? (3 of 3)

I think that Jesus would blog stories of healing.

Maybe Jesus would tell others to blog about stories of healing or maybe tell them not to blog about it. Although a healing story is definitely blogalicious, Jesus did not always encourage others to share about them. A blog is a great medium for telling stories and stories of healing, like parables, would be a great fit.

I invite you to join me in writing a post or a series of posts answering the question – What Would Jesus Blog?

  1. Write a post with “WWJBlog” in the subject line, answering the question – What Would Jesus Blog?
  2. Invite readers of your blog to write similar posts
  3. Link back to this post and join the conversation.

WWJBlog? (2 of 3)

I think that Jesus would blog parables.

Parables are stories to which people can easily relate, have a meaning or lesson and can be read over and over with different nuances discovered each time. Blogging is an excellent platform for stories and I think it would be a great match.

I invite you to join me in writing a post or a series of posts answering the question – What Would Jesus Blog?

  1. Write a post with “WWJBlog” in the subject line, answering the question – What Would Jesus Blog?
  2. Invite readers of your blog to write similar posts
  3. Link back to this post and join the conversation.