In the book by John Flowers and Karen Vannoy, 10 Temptations of Church: Why Churches Decline & What to Do About it, they write about how to spot insiders within the church. Those who love the church and have been embedded for years there. I think it is important to notice who the insiders are within a congregation because insiders will set up the most resistance to change and to open a congregation up you have to open the insider up.
Here is their list (in a Jeff Foxworthian style)
You know you are in insider if….
- You know the names of a significant percentage of the people in your worshiping congregation.
- Your table is the first table that fills up at all the church.
- You can recite the linear history of your congregation for the past two decades.
- You were around prior to the last building campaign.
- You are a carrier of “institutional memory.”
- You have received direct benefits of long-term membership