The assessment is a means of discerning if the church's ministry is on track with God's purposes and design for the church.
- Proverbs 14:8 - "The wisdom of the prudent is to give thought to their ways ..."
- Proverbs 24:3-6 - "By wisdom a house is built, and through understanding it is established; through knowledge its rooms are filled with rare and beautiful treasures. A wise man has great power, and a man of knowledge increases strength; for waging war you need guidance, and for victory many advisers."
- Luke 14:28-32 - "Suppose one of you wants to build a tower. Will he not first sit down and estimate the cost to see if he has enough money to complete it? For if he lays the foundation and is not able to finish it, everyone who sees it will ridicule him, ... Or suppose a king is about to go to war against another king. Will he not first sit down and consider whether he is able with ten thousand men to oppose the one coming against him with twenty thousand? ... "
- 1 Corinthians 9:26 - "Therefore I do not run like a man running aimlessly; I do not fight like a man beating the air."
Also Read: Want to Be More Discerning? - Look at God
A constructive assessment will strengthen and build up the body of Christ not condemn and divide. It will provide accountability and also a sense of ownership for those involved in the process. As a result of the needs assessment, you will identify strengths on which to build and weaknesses on which to work. A needs assessment will help you determine if new ministries should be initiated and/or if any existing ministries should be terminated.
How many people participate in the needs assessment could depend on the size of your church and also on how much effort you are willing to put into the assessment. The entire congregation could be involved in providing input or perhaps a cross-section of individuals from different areas of your church's life. The process could be coordinated by church leadership, an appointed committee, or an outside agency or consultant. Doing the assessment internally would tend to build greater ownership in the implementation of results.
In doing a needs assessment you are basically answering some strategic questions. Answers will come from a variety of sources. You might take surveys, interview ministry leaders and/or participants, examine reports and statistics, observe the various ministries in action, or a combination of these sources. An assessment should generate some honest soul-searching in the church. And, every step of the process should be enveloped in prayer. Click here for suggestions on the type of strategic questions you should be asking.
In addition to this content the Staffing Ministry Manual includes suggested preparations and a process you might use to ask and answer strategic questions as well as a form for recording your conclusions.
- What kinds of questions should be answered in a ministry needs assessment?
- Church Leadership Skill: Assessment