Buckyballs in Ministry
Author: Paul D. McDonald, MBA
""Buckyballs"" are molecules named after F. Buckminster Fuller. Chemically, it is C26, where the carbon atoms are connected into a large ball (see figure at right). This molecule is incredibly strong. It can bounce, enlarge, compress, and even hold several other molecules inside its structure. It is stable and difficult to break down.
Pretend now that each individual in the church is a carbon atom. Their ""binding"" is the relationships that they have with others in the church. If an individual has a relationship with one other person and that relationship suffers, then the ""lattice structure"" of the church suffers. Churches can quite easily lose people this way.
Also, if one group of people has strong bonding with each other and one other person (such as a small group leader or small group coach) then the same issue exists on a grander scale. If the one person who holds that key relationship with the church (the ""lynchpin"" in the diagram) breaks that relationship (be it theological differences or moving to a new city) then the group for any reason that has the strong relationship with that one person loses their link with the church.
However, if one person has good relationships with many people and one ""breaks"" there are others to keep the person in the church. The church is then strong, elastic, and will continue to grow. These ""lattice relationships"" will keep people coming back through thick and thin.
What can we use from this in ministry? Work to form the Seven Connections of a Strong Church!
1. Large Group (Worship Services) 2. Medium Sized Group (Men's, Women's, High School, Junior High, Etc) 3. Small Groups 4. Serving Teams 5. Support Group 6. Mentorship 7. Prayer Support
Work to get people connected through all seven categories and they are much more likely to remain connected to the church body!
About the author: Paul D. McDonald, MBA, has consulted with churches on growth and management of the ""business aspects"" of running a church. Visit http://wreach.blogspot.com/ to learn more.