How to Kill a Movement

Movement Killer-3

1. Require education for the leadership
2. Demand conformity of methodology
3. Refuse to provide administrative help and let it suffocate under it’s own weight
4. Get spooked by supernatural phenomena outside your paradigm
5. Make no room for younger, less experienced leadership
6. Be obsessed by theological purity
7. Put the safety of the people involved as a higher priority than sacrifice
8. Centralize the funding
9. Punish out-of-the box thinking
10. Manage it by goals and strategic plans
11. Reward faithfulness rather than entrepreneurial ability
12. Get tied to property and buildings
13. Let your critics define you
14. Be threatened by giftedness that’s not like you
15. Create an endowment
16. Treat creativity as heresy
17. Refuse to exercise discipline for the right things
18. Make sure you are related to existing institutions for credibility
19. Promote on the basis of seniority and longevity
20. Insist that decisions be based on policy instead of values
21. Make nurture and conservation of gains a focus
22. Don’t be intentional about leadership selection
23. Be risk adverse under the guise of stewarding your people
24. Justify your reluctance to raise money
25. Have a big need for approval and affirmation

Above all else, control it if, God forbid, he actually shows up!

10 Responses to “How to Kill a Movement”

  1. Tom Middleton Says:

    Exciting and frightening at the same time. It is so much in the core of much of the western Church’s fabric and DNA to do what you have mentioned here.

  2. Tom Webb Says:

    Stimulating critique. I would love to discuss further with you and I would like someone like George Verwer, or Ralf Winter to give their thoughts on your list.

  3. Lou Braun Says:

    Really like this list, I hope its okay I put a link to this post on my blog.

  4. Kevin Tracy Says:

    I was part of an organization whose core structure was numbers 1-10 to the letter. What’s truly awe inspiring is how God circumvents and frustrates all the above. These things can kill a movement, will slow things to a crawl and wound people deeply in the process, but can’t stop God.

  5. Moses Kimani Says:

    I was cheering as I read your list. It speaks into my past experiences as a developing leader. Thanx for challenging status quo!

  6. tony sheng Says:

    Merry Christmas Sam!

  7. Jim Playter Says:

    Thought the list was a pretty good assessment. Great movements happen because of or in spite of the way we respond to the opportunities He brings us.

  8. Gad Fly Says:

    Nice list! May I offer one more to insert between 16 and 17? The flip side of 16 actually: “Treat heresy as creativity”. I think we can be inclined to both errors. Though I suppose letting heresy flow would enable a movement of one sort (and arguably would not fit on your list). But I tend to think that heretical movements should die, and I imagine you do as well.

  9. Phil Says:

    Great list. Thanks for the inspiration to stay focused on His Kingdom, not ours!

  10. Ernst Vanderwalt Says:

    I am trying to get in touch with Tom Webb please…can you help? Thank you!

Leave a Reply