Natural Church Development has the Potential to Unite your Church:
In His high priestly prayer, Jesus prayed that all of His people ‘may be brought to complete unity to let the world know that you sent me and have loved them even as you have loved me.’ (John 17:23).
Note the results that come from complete unity: (1) The world may know that God sent His Son. (2) The world may know that God loves it as much as he loves His Son. From this prayer we may safely assume that unity is pretty important.
In the ancient song expressed in Psalm 133, the writer says: ‘How good and pleasant it is when brothers live together in unity!….For there the Lord bestows his blessing…’ I like the way it comes out in the New Living Translation: ‘How wonderful and pleasant it is when brothers live together in harmony!’
Unity is a good word. But you can have unity using standover tactics – unity by oppression. Unity with ‘yes’ men; unity where the one at the top does all the thinking and the followers simply snap to attention. But harmony , as in the NLT, suggests that people are singing different notes, and yet they are all singing from the same song sheet. Harmony suggests different people, each using his or her different gifts, yet with the same focus. Unity in diversity.
People do have honest differences over doctrine. They have different opinions about style and philosophy of ministry and the kind of music that should be used in a church. But Natural Church Development goes deeper than all of that.
Because NCD can help a church to focus, it can also help unify a church around a common objective: to become a healthy (or even healthier) church.