Alan Hirsch (one half of the Frost & Hirsch whose book we've been talking about here for some time now) works as a church consultant. He helps church plants get started, and he works with existing churches to help them grow. When he's working with a church that has plateaued or is in decline, he has a special question he likes to ask them. I think it's brilliant for the incisive way it gets people to think about some of the things we've been talking about here.
If you could start again from scratch, would you do it the same way?
In other words, if you could start a new church with no baggage, would you do everything your church currently does? Would you meet on Sunday mornings and have a Bible class either before or after? Would you call people back to the building multiple times during the week? Would you build a building with hard, wooden benches all bolted into the tile floor and facing a platform filled with a giant wooden box of a pulpit (or the clear plastic kind preferred by some), artificial plants, chairs no one sits in, a mural behind the baptistry painted to look like the Jordan River?
If you could start again from scratch, would you do it the same way? What would you change? What would you keep?