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  • Writer's pictureAlice J Stewart

Attitude Adjustment

Main Idea: Opportunity in Operations


I had a Meyer's lemon tree once. I brought it inside and decorated it - the lemons made excellent Christmas ornaments. After Christmas, I preserved the lemons and used them to make lamb on Easter.

Life gave me lemons. I used those lemons to glorify God in my own home. It's all about attitude. (But, honestly, who doesn't like Meyer's lemons?)

Let's try some reframing of our story as struggling mainline churches.

What we say:

Churches are shrinking.

Reframing the story:

The Holy Spirit is blessing us with the gift of smallness.

What we say:

We can't afford an outreach program to serve our community.

Reframing the story:

We've created a social enterprise that employs and trains people in our community. The new business allows us to form deep relationships with community members.

What we say:

Our church is closing. We must go elsewhere.

Reframing the story:

Our church building no longer suits our needs. We're going to thrive in our new place.

This month, as you wrestle with your budget, consider reframing the story. I'm not suggesting that you sweep concerns under the rug. Be realistic and call it like you see it. But then try to look at your problems as opportunities.

Instead of, "we can't..." begin your description of the issues as, "we have the opportunity to...".

Let us know how you're reframing your story in the comments below. Have trouble? Let's find a solution together.

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