The Church is the living Body of Christ. Like all healthy organisms, it requires numerous systems which work together to fulfill its intended purpose. Often churches have to keep in mind a multitude of complex forms and regulations which may have been useful at the time they were instituted, but which lost their functionality over time. Each must be evaluated regularly to determine if it is still the best way to accomplish the intended purpose.
"Effective Structures" has proven to be the most controversial of the eight quality characteristics. The false paradigms which consciously or unconsciously influence most Christians are especially harmful in this area. Spiritualists tend to be skeptical of structures, deeming them unspiritual, while others mistake certain structures for the very essence of the church of Jesus Christ.
NCD research confirmed an extremely negative relationship between traditionalism and both growth and quality within the church.
In order to develop effective structures, several things have to be looked at:
"Who are you?"
"Where are you going?"
"How will you get there?"
"Are you there yet?"
"What are you doing to get where we want to go?"
"Who is going to do it, and what are they supposed to do?"
The NCD survey measures:
- Organizational structures and systems
- Leadership oversight
- Vision, goals, and planning
- Creativity and managing change