Since 2004, helping pastors understand this disruptive approach to local church ministry and community engagement is what Mosaix is all about.
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Dr. Mark DeYmaz is a long-time friend of Leadership Network and we are thrilled that he has written this week’s article. Mark is the directional leader of Mosaic Church of Central Arkansas ( and president of Mosaix Global Network ( He is the author of numerous books including Disruption: Repurposing the Church to Redeem the Community from which in part this article has been adapted.

If you haven’t already, be sure to register for the upcoming Mosaix conference in Dallas, TX.

Repurposing the Church to Redeem the Community

After winning the 2012 Super Bowl as head coach of the National Football League’s (NFL) New York Giants, Tom Coughlin provided insight on what it took for his team to return from an ambiguous 7–7 start to finish the season 9–7, and then go on to win the rest of their games to become the league’s champion. Coughlin said, "Offense, defense and special teams doing their job. Each group having different objectives and motives but playing in harmony for each other, for the good of everyone."

Think about it.

An NFL team is actually a "team of teams" consisting of three separate groups playing three distinct games: offense, defense, and special teams. The games are so different from one another that players from each group never play at the same time, and each team has its own coach (coordinator).

For the entire team to win a big game, such as an NFL Super Bowl, each separate group must perform with excellence and minimize mistakes all within a specific time frame. On any given day a team’s offense may play well, but the game will likely be lost if its defense can’t stop the run. Similarly, its offense and defense may play well for nearly sixty minutes, but the game will be lost in the final seconds of play if a late kickoff is returned for a touchdown or a field goal is missed by a kicker. In such cases, the special teams group fails and the entire football team loses the game.

Similarly, a well balanced approach is needed today in the local church to get beyond rhetoric to results in terms of community engagement and transformation in an increasingly diverse and painfully polarized society.

As with an American football team then, pastors would do well to (re)structure their churches as one team composed of three separate teams, with "each group having different objectives and motives but playing in harmony for each other, for the good of everyone." We can designate the three teams as Spiritual, Social, and Financial. Each team then would have its own "coach" and develop its own income stream.

First, to advance a credible witness of God’s love for all people (not just some people) the Spiritual Team (led by a senior pastor) will need to move away from the homogeneity of the twentieth century and become a healthy multi-ethnic and economically diverse reflection of its community in the twenty-first century. The Spiritual Team exists to evangelize, baptize, disciple, and multiply the Christian faith. It gathers people for worship, connects them relationally, and deploys them to work with children, with young adults, overseas as missionaries, and in many more ways, according to their varying passions and giftings. The Spiritual Team functions as part of the church which is organized as a nonprofit and therefore able to receive tax-deductible donations.

Next, a Social Team (led by an executive director) should be established to advance biblical justice and compassionate work in the community. For instance, it might distribute food and clothing to those in need, mentor at-risk children, provide low-cost services to immigrants seeking legal status, challenge inequitable rates of incarceration, assist families who have adopted or foster children or advocate for teen mothers of preschoolers, etc. The Social Team should be organized by the church as a separate 501(c)(3) nonprofit (think two sisters living in the same house) in order to scale efforts beyond what a church budget might otherwise be able to support. By so doing, the Social Team can be funded by local, state, and federal grants not otherwise available to churches; tax-deductible contributions from concerned individuals; and resources gifted by other churches or Christian organizations not typically inclined to give money directly to a local church.

Finally, churches today should create a Financial Team (led by a CEO) to apply the principles of Church Economics by leveraging church assets (people, money, and facilities) to bless the community and generate sustainable income. In this way, the Financial Team can supplement what for most churches today has become stagnant and/or declining tithes and offerings. The Financial Team exists to practice good stewardship (Matthew 25:19-23) by investing church resources in entrepreneurs and small business development. How so? By repurposing abandoned or underutilized property and establishing rent roles through benevolent ownership, monetizing (some) existing church services, and starting new businesses. Such activity helps to create jobs, reduce the likelihood of crime in the neighborhood, and generate tax revenue for the city. It will bring emotional and economic uplift to the community whereby even those without Christ benefit from the good works and recognize that is the God of our faith behind them. (Matthew 5:16) The Financial Team should be organized as a for-profit entity (or entities) and therefore will not be able to receive tax-deductible donations.

Since 2004, helping pastors understand this disruptive approach to local church ministry and community engagement is what Mosaix is all about. More specifically, our 4th National Multi-ethnic Church Conference coming to Dallas, TX, November 5-7, 2019, is pitched to address all three facets of local church ministry and community engagement as discussed above. Thanks to generous sponsors like Leadership Network, it promises to be our largest event to date. 112 speakers have been assembled to provide encouragement, inspiration, motivation, and direction through 6 plenary sessions, 72 workshops, and 7 Pre-conference Intensives to the 1,300+ attendees now expected to gather… all for just $149 a ticket! There’s still time to register… you are warmly welcome to join us.

As with an NFL team, I believe the American church and every local church of which it is comprised must today reexamine its game plan. We must get away from any one dimensional strategy to develop a team of teams, each one playing in harmony with the others to advance the mission. Indeed, hard work, bold faith, and unwavering determination are not enough to win the "big game" when it comes to advancing the gospel in today’s cynical and intersectional society. To do that, we’ll need to understand the why, how, and what of disruptive innovation and develop a well-balanced approach.
Leadership Network is proud to sponsor the Mosaix conference next month and we hope to see you there!


Ron Edmondson
Chief Executive Officer

Leadership Network, 1328 N Lake Park Blvd, Carolina Beach, NC 28428, United States

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