Many churches measure their success by the “3 B’s.” What are these 3 B’s? Doug Holliday at Sonlife describes them this way: Budgets, Buildings and Butts in seats.
In the same way that senior pastors sometimes measure their success by these 3 B’s, a youth leader can be tempted to measure his or her success by how big their budget is, how cool their youth room is and how many teenagers are attending their weekly meetings.
Try This! ❯
Take some time this week to consider your ministry’s outcomes. Are you measuring ultimate impact—like transformed lives? Or are you measuring activity—like weekly attendance?
But are these the right things to measure? Are they actually measuring the ultimate impact of your Gospel Advancing Ministry? Not really, because they are measuring activity, not impact.
Which is why measuring biblical outcomes is one of the foundational values of a thriving Gospel Advancing Ministry. Biblical outcomes serve as the best measuring rod because they provide a practical gage of ministry impact.
Outcomes Matter to God
Jesus told His disciples, “You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you so that you might go and bear fruit—fruit that will last—and so that whatever you ask in my name the Father will give you.”
“Fruit that will last” is how Jesus described outcomes.
The word “outcome” sounds a bit technical and “businesslike.” But God is all about outcomes. Outcomes reflect the results of our labors—the fruit that we are seeking to produce as a result of our ministry efforts.
What Is a Biblical Outcome
We see God’s heart for the fruit that comes from the advancement of the gospel in 2 Peter 3:9: “He [God] does not want anyone to be destroyed, but wants everyone to repent.” So it only makes sense to assess our ministry effectiveness by measuring the things God cares about—the things that give us a pulse on whether our ministry efforts are actually resulting in lives being transformed as the gospel advances both in and through our students.
Or consider the church in the book of Acts. When Barnabas visited Antioch in Acts 11:19-24: He “saw what the grace of God had done.” What did he see? He saw outcomes! He witnessed firsthand the fruit of the good news being preached and accepted. What did that fruit look like? It was both qualitative and quantitative. In other words, it was good and there was lots of it. In the same way, we want to see the evidence of God blessing our ministry efforts—“outcomes”—on both levels.Biblical outcomes offer a fixed point for ministries to measure their impact. Click To Tweet
Qualitative AND Quantitative Outcomes
On a qualitative level, we want our teenagers to grow in their knowledge of and service to Jesus. As Peter reminded his Jewish friends in 2 Peter 1:5-8:
For this very reason, make every effort to add to your faith goodness; and to goodness, knowledge; and to knowledge, self-control; and to self-control, perseverance; and to perseverance, godliness; and to godliness, mutual affection; and to mutual affection, love. For if you possess these qualities in increasing measure, they will keep you from being ineffective and unproductive in your knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.
God wants our teenagers to develop godly character and be “productive and effective” for His kingdom. These are the qualitative outcomes He is looking for and working toward in them and in us.
On a quantitative level, these outcomes have to do with the number of people we are impacting with the gospel of Jesus. As Acts 2:47 reminds us, “The Lord added to their number daily those who were being saved.”
You see, it’s not just about numbers, but it’s about the right numbers. And the right numbers have to do with how many are coming to Christ and growing in Christ, as a result of you mobilizing your teenagers for making disciples who make disciples. In next week’s Mobilize, we’ll drill down into more specifics about how to determine which numbers are the right numbers to measure.
Take some time this week to consider your ministry’s outcomes. Are you measuring ultimate impact—like transformed lives? Or are you measuring activity—like weekly attendance? Do the outcomes you’re measuring tie into your ministry’s bold vision? If not, tune in to next week’s Mobilize for help adjusting and recalibrating what you’re measuring.
Want more practical advice on mobilizing your teens to share the gospel? All of our Mobilize stories offer great ideas for training your students and building a Gospel Advancing Ministry. Sign up here to receive this free, hands-on, weekly resource in your inbox!