A Phrase I Don’t Understand

There is a phrase I keep hearing over and over again…that I just don’t understand. The phrase is “getting it done”. I read it in blog posts…I hear it at conferences…and listen to pastors use it to “one up” each other. The thing I don’t understand about the phrase “getting it done”…it is almost always used when talking about worship attendance.

It would seem to me that a church that is fulfilling all areas of Matthew 28:18-20 is actually “getting it done”. That would include teaching and discipling…not just the going and baptizing part.

How can a church that baptizes 100 people a year, yet only get 1/2 of them into the discipleship process be considered “getting it done”? How can a church that has 3,000 people walking in the front door each month while 300 people walk out the back door be considered “getting it done”? How can a church with 1,500 in weekly worship attendance and less than 60% of them in a regular Bible study be considered “getting it done”?

Your thoughts???

A Phrase I Don’t Understand

15 thoughts on “A Phrase I Don’t Understand

  1. Um… Because folks wandering in the door give money… and the more you placate them the more they give. Try actively discipling half the folks in our churches today, and that stream of folks out the back door will grow into a flash flood.

    Call me cynical if you like…

    (ps. i know that’s not true for all churches… there are some fabulous churches out there who are doing a great job of fulfilling ALL of the Great Commission!)


  2. I dont know the blog/church/context of the phrase as it was used. But your point is valid – getting it done is not the same as getting them in the door. However I think getting people in the door is PART of getting it done. And I think its OK to celebrate when God gathers a gathers people – be it 2 – or 2000 – or 20000. As long as we git er done for Jesus!


  3. Hell is hot and people are headed there. Yes, it’s important to help people grow in their walk with God, but my heart beats for evangelism. That is: helping people step across the line of faith. To me, that’s getting the job done. If that’s not happening on the front end, then I’m assuming very little development is happening on the back end either. When we all get to heaven, God will complete the good work He’s started in us, no matter how far we’ve “matured” along the way. Call me simplistic and shallow πŸ™‚ but that’s how I roll.


  4. I don’t understand the phrase either. I do, but I don’t.

    Phrase aside, isn’t the real evaluation to come from the Lord anyway?

    Something like… “Therefore judge nothing before the time, until the Lord comes, who will both bring to light the hidden things of darkness and reveal the counsels of the hearts. Then each one’s praise will come from God.”
    (1 Cor. 4:5)

    Honestly, I have grown tired and cynical of the esteem given to the guys that are supposedly getting it done.

    What if a Pastor Megachurch is actually gifted enough to be Pastor Doublemega church, but he is only giving a 50% effort? he has 5000, but is running at 50% efficiency. That was an “F” when I was in school.

    Pastor Littlechurch down the street is running at 90% efficiency, but only has 100 people in His church.

    Who is more faithful? Doh!

    But only God knows that stuff, so forget everything I just said. πŸ™‚


  5. This issue is not mega or small church…the issue is health. There are big churches that are healthy churches…there are small churches that are sick. The guys that moved me the most at the recent Evolve Conference were talking about overall church health and downplaying the “numbers” game. There was much maturity in what they were saying…all had big churches…but started out small. They really dispelled the whole “launch large” insanity and instead focused on “reaching the one”. It has really been causing me to think…thus the post.


  6. Chris,
    I agree, health is the issue, not numbers.

    When you mentioned the phrase, “getting it done”, that was what flashed in my mind. It seems to have come to mean “how many”, etc.

    Perhaps a better use of the phrase ought to be, as you said…”overall church health”.


  7. I think this is a clear example of moving beyond a biblical mindset. When I coach my technical teams I talk about “getting it done”. But getting it done in church is not about numbers. There is a real danger that we will be “white washed tombs”. Our churches have the numbers but no substance on the inside.

    Getting it done is Pete. That is what getting it done looks like.


  8. I have not found it to be true that people who wander in the door give money. 99% of pastors do not become a pastor for the awesome pay package. Most of them would be making a ton more in the marketplace. And if the folks coming in the door eventually do give money, it’s because there is a good discipleship process in place that teaches the importance of biblical stewardship.


  9. I was responding to Kathi’s first comment that started off with the idea that pastor’s want to see their churches grow so they (or the church) can make more money. But if you start really teaching them, they’ll leave, according to her. When really, that’s certainly not the motivation and if you want to see people give, you do have to teach it. Placated people don’t give, challenged people give. It was just something that stuck with me through the day and I felt like I needed to come back to it.


  10. Cole – Thanks…I didn’t initially see it in Kathi’s post. I agree wholeheartedly with what you said. The crazy thing…the only people to consistently leave Compass Point when we preach “hard” is church people that came over from elsewhere. Unchurched people…in our experience…really don’t sweat preaching about tithing and seeking God first in finances. In fact, they respond well…the only folks that fronted me about preaching on tithing…was people that have been “following” the Lord for many years. It’s amazing how “seasoned” Christians rewrite what the Scriptures say in accordance with their personal baggage.

    By the way…I know quite a few pastors of large churches…they live okay…but not “high on the hog”. Unfortunately televangelists still give us all a bad name. The whole Church Without Walls thing has exploded around here because of the sell of the building. The newspapers have been doing multiple articles each week about the White’s lavish lifestyle. The robbery done in the name of Jesus is just…sickening!!!


  11. Jeff Hammes says:

    The Great Commission is like planting seeds, and following through, as you said. But eyes are opened and ears hear only through the Holy Spirit.

    For me, “getting it done” is obeying the Counselor. When I try to do anything in my own strength, I fail. May I diminish, that He may exceed.

    Often I hear the cliche “getting it done” and smell something fishy – wondering if someone is trying to take credit for what the Holy Spirit has done.


  12. Hi Chris,

    I gotta chime in on this topic. When I see that phrase or use that phrase, I see it as a cheerleading moment, a get pumped up, I’m pumped up moment. I can’t say that I have ever understood it to be a competitive statement. I agree that the church should strive to have all in discipleship but frankly that rarely happens. I have been in ministry for many years and have yet to see 100% attendance in any discipleship class or whatever it may be. As for people keaving “out the back door”, it’s going to happen and because it is happening doesn’t mean a church isn’t getting it done. As a ministry develops there are changes that happen, and some people just can’t go along with those changes, it’s better for them to go out than to stay and clog things up.


  13. This can be a pretty slippery slope. The line between evangelism and discipleship is definitely questionable and everyone responding has great comments. I’ve been on both sides in church, focusing on discipleship and focusing on evangelism. I’ve come to the point that I believe evangelism is a part of discipleship, both for the evangelizer and evangelizee. If the point of the church is to disciple, the church begins to focus inwardly since someone who isn’t a Christ-Follower can’t grow in their Christ-Likeness. If you focus on evangelism only, you miss the opportunity to train others to evangelize themselves losing opportunities for new believers and the mandate to become more like Christ. Does that adequately walk the fence? By the way, according to spell check, I just created two new words πŸ™‚ There goes the readability score of this blog.


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