The Tree had to Go

May 25, 2013

We recently had to cut down the gigantic weeping willow tree that sat right next to my wife's daycare (which is where our church currently meets).  The daycare is attatched to the back of our house.  It wasn't built when I planted the tree over a decade ago with the idea that it would one day give shade to our home.

It more than did the job.  It grew and grew to be one of the biggest trees around in a very short time and was something almost everybody commented on when seeing our home.

But then it happened.  The roots of the mighty tree began to go under the daycare building.  If you looked closely at the foundation you could see a small crack beginning to form.  It was either get rid of the willow or cause structural damage to the building.

So the tree service came and the landmark is no more.  I will now pour bleach into holes the tree cutter placed in the roots for me, and that will finish the job.  The back yard looks so empty.  It is strange to walk that direction and not have to dodge the hanging branches.  A chapter in the life of our house is over.

But this is the way of things.  Even in small churches, there comes a time that something that has meant a lot must go.  It was great in its time and greatly benefitted the congregation.  But now it is no longer helpful and left untouched will eventually cause problems.

It's usually hard to let these things go.  Sometimes it's a program that was so successful in bringing people into the church.  Other times it's a way of doing things that just gets outdated.  Whatever, the time comes for it to be taken down.  This is usually not a pleasant process and often (as with my tree) causes some grief.

But you can't allow the church to be broken up by something thats' time is up.  It is up to you as a leader to help your people through the process of seeing the need and eventually taking it down.  I insured that the foundation of our daycare will last for many more years.  May you take the steps needed to keep your church healthy for a long time as well


Doing Ministry on a Small Budget

March 22, 2013

One issue of small church life that is a constant headache is stretching a tight budget.  Some congregations don’t have to deal with this issue, but most find it a regular struggle.

My own church is a case in point.  We minister to people that often cannot contribute much in the way of money.  That’s fine—it’s who God has led us to and we thrive on helping them.  But the reality is that a handful of people is providing the money we need.  This hinders us from building the place of wors...

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The $258,000 Question

February 26, 2013

I heard from our builder the other day.  He said the plan we had drawn up for our new church would cost us $258,000.  It took me by surprise...I had rejected an earlier plan for a larger building that came in around the same price.  Knowing our small church could not afford it, I scaled down the size of the building from 8,000 sq ft to 6,400.  The price did not really change.

I have come to realize the reason is not in the size, but the content.  Both designs had a sanctuary, fellowship hall, ...

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Gun Control and the Small Church

January 20, 2013

In the wake of the recent school shooting, gun control has been a hot topic.  Some see firearms as a threat that needs to go away.  Others see them as an important means of protection that every citizen needs.  Whatever your views, an interesting side topic is the place of guns in church.

First let me point out that God intended church to be a loving atmosphere.  In this day and age where anyone can walk in off the street and start shooting at everyone in the congregation, that is a tough orde...

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Preparing for Culture Shock when Moving to a Small Church

January 10, 2013

It is not unusual to hear of someone who has moved from a large church to a small congregation.  The reasons vary.  Sometimes a young person on staff at a large church is offered the senior pastor position with the smaller group.  Some large church leaders as they get older are ready to “step down” a notch or two and so move to a small church.  Others just think it would be easier to minister at a small church and so leave to get away from problems.

Whatever the reason, moving to a small c...

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Teaching Biblical Values in a Biblically Illiterate Age

September 14, 2012

  We live in a time where precious few people know the teachings of the Bible.  Many people THINK they know what the Scriptures say.  They heard their mom say this or saw that on tv.  Maybe they read a religious article written by a Christian so now they know what the Bible teaches.

  The sad part is that many of the people I am talking about are Christians!  They spend little to no time studying the Bible for themselves and are therefore quite unaware of God's teachings.

  As an example, I rec...

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A Little Too Cautious

August 9, 2012

  I recently saw a commercial for a new car.  It was a family ride and the ad depicted parents and children doing normal family things.  One scene showed them driving down the road headed for school.  I noticed that at the bottom of the picture there were words that said "Professional driver.  Closed course.  Do not attempt."

  Now I've seen this same caption on ads showing drivers racing down the road at high speed making harrowing curves and spectacular jumps.  But a simple drive down the ro...

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I Yelled at the Lady on the Phone

June 15, 2012

  Church leaders are supposed to be upright, godly, and show a good attitude toward all.  But today I yelled at the lady on the phone.  No, it wasn't a telemarketer calling at a bad time and refusing to stop even though I said I wasn't interested.  Nor was it a rude crank caller mouthing me for no good reason.  Sadly, it was a nice, polite woman just doing her job.

  I was paying bills and tried to set up internet banking on one of my wife's credit cards.  I usually pay by check, but I was afr...

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Using Online Helps in the Small Church

May 13, 2012

   This is not a post about all of the different online tools available out there.  It would take an entire series of articles to cover them all.  Rather I want to encourage you to search around and find resources that can make your church experience better.

   There is a wealth of information at your fingertips.  Just Google a term and you are likely to get thousands of responses.  I recently searched the term "small church" and was surprised to see my website on the ...

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Small Church Pastors Need to Pray

April 20, 2012


All of our failures are prayer failures and all of our successes are prayer successes.


                Everyone knows that prayer is essential for success in the ministry.  Everyone knows we need to pray more than we do.  Every book written on doing well as a pastor includes a chapter on prayer.  So why don’t we pray more? 

                Some pastors don’t pray as they should because of their busy schedule.  In small churches the pastor is often called upon to do so many jobs. ...

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About Me

Terry Reed
Wynne, Arkansas
Terry Reed


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