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  Other times it's a way of doing things that just gets outdated.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