CNLP 158: Kara Powell on How to Tell if Your Church is Positioned to Draw Millennials and Her Personal Habits and Rhythms as a Leader and Mom

What does your church need to do to connect better with Millennials? 

Kara Powell shares insights from research from 250 effective churches on practices that work for any size church in any setting. Plus, she shares how she gets it all done as an academic, mom, church leader, author and speaker.

Welcome to Episode 158 of the podcast.

Guest Links

Kara on Facebook

Kara on Twitter

Ready to define reality for your church with the Growing Young Assessment? Get 30% off any Assessment type (Individual, Team, or Church) with the promo code CAREY until October 19, 2017. Go to and enter the promo code at checkout.

Links Mentioned

Be a part of the Breaking 200 Without Breaking You launch here

CNLP 101: Turning Around A Dying Church – Lee Kricher On Setting A Church Up For The Next Generation

CNLP 122: Essentialism’s Greg McKeown On How To Simplify Your Life And Focus On What Produces Exponential Results

And the Winner Is!

The podcast turned 3 on September 12th and we had so much fun celebrating with you! Thanks to everyone who sent in comments.  Our team loved reading what you had to say.

In addition to giving away free Starbucks every day for a week (congrats to the hundreds of winners!), we’re giving away a Leadership Prize Pack — a bundle of all my books and courses including the brand new Breaking 200 Without Breaking You and a 30 minute phone call with me.

Thanks to everyone who sent in comments.  Our team loved hearing your stories!

And the winner? Congratulations to Chuck Carter!

Here’s Chuck’s story:

My name is Chuck Carter and I became the senior pastor at my church two weeks ago after serving four years as youth pastor. I am 29 years old, and married with three kids.

Our church is the classic story of a declining congregation. 35 years ago, we were one of the largest congregations in our area. Now, we have about 100 people in our large facility and we continue to shrink. About a year ago as our leadership board began discussing change, strategy, and vision, the current senior pastor who had been at our church for 25 years, step down saying ” I do not believe I have the temperament or skill set to lead our church through this period of change”

So I am looking for any help I can get to turn our church around. We have an amazing opportunity with our location being directly across the street from one of the largest high schools in our county, but our congregation has turned inward. We need to begin serving and reaching the surrounding community. My goal is to not being another “cool church ” that takes people away from other churches. I hope we become a force for evangelism reaching the lost in our community. But for that to happen, we will seriously need to change the way we do ministry.

I attended the re-think the leadership conference this past summer and the information was so helpful. I know that your resources would also be helpful in leading change in our dwindling congregation.

Really hoping the ministry library and the free consult will help Chuck and his team.

Thank you to everyone who entered! Your stories are so inspiring and the reason we do the podcast.

3 Insights from This Episode

1. There is a huge opportunity for caring adults to speak into the lives of the next generation

It’s no shock to hear that teens and young adults today are experiencing social pressures like never before.  They are more stressed and anxious than most generations that have come before them. 

The upside to this dis-heartening reality is that these anxieties create an opportunity for caring adults to enter in and show them the love of Jesus. All it takes is finding ways to engage together in meaningful experiences and continued time investing in authentic relationships.  

2. Listen to the next generation and watch your church grow young

Churches are well-intentioned and motivated, but often use out-dated efforts to reach the young adults in their communities. The truth is what worked ten or twenty years ago is no longer reliable and church leaders must be open to listening to the needs of the next generation without making excuses or being intimidated by change.

Research shows younger adults are drawn to stripped down worship experiences, investing in friendships and mentorships, networking opportunities, service projects and volunteering within the church. These are areas churches should easily be able to offer the next generation whatever the budget. Tap into the needs of the youth in your communities and watch your church grow in size, energy and passion.   

3. You can’t get it all done, but you can focus on what’s most important now

Academic, mom, church leader, author, speaker. Kara Powell has a lot on her plate and she’s the first to admit she can’t get it all done. For her, focusing on what’s most important NOW is key. Here are her go-to strategies for prioritizing well.

  1. Stay organized.
  2. Be open to receiving help from others.
  3. Keep a fixed calendar.
  4. Make time to reconnect with family.
  5. Get good at saying no.
  6. Let go of the inbox.

Quotes from This Episode

Break the Barrier 85% of Church Leaders Never Break

So you would love to reach more people, but how? Your church just can’t seem to sustainably grow past the 200 barrier. And you’re really not sure why.

Today we release a brand new online course called Breaking 200 Without Breaking You.

It’s designed to help senior pastors and their boards and leadership team break through the barrier 85% of churches never move past: the 200 attendance barrier.

So many leaders who try to break it either get stuck at 150-250 in attendance or burned out in the process of trying.

It doesn’t have to be that way.

Believe it or not, the reasons most churches never break 200 aren’t spiritual reasons, they’re practical reasons. Strategic reasons.

The course tackles eight key issues that keep churches from passing the 200 barrier and beyond. It includes:

  • 8 videos designed to guide you and your leadership team through all the key growth barriers smaller churches face.
  • 150 page downloadable workbook for you and your team.
  • 12 licenses, so you can take your entire team through it—board, staff, key volunteers—whoever you want (that’s about $20 a person).
  • A bonus cheat sheet with access to 20 free resources designed to take you further.
  • A private Breaking 200 Facebook Group access exclusive to the first 1000 purchasers.

So whether your church is 50, 150 or 250 in attendance, the principles will help you gain the insight you need to break the barrier more than 85% of churches can’t break.

Check it out now to get an exclusive insider information and a free bonus and to be the first to know when the course releases.

The podcast releases every Tuesday morning.

Subscribe for free and never miss out on wisdom from world-class leaders like Brian Houston, Andy Stanley, Louie Giglio, Ravi Zacharias, Craig Groeschel, Sue Miller, Kara Powell, Chuck Swindoll, Greg McKeown, Jon Acuff and many others.

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Hopefully, this episode has helped you lead like never before. That’s my goal. If you appreciated it, could you share the love?

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Thank you for being so awesome.

Next Episode: Ron Edmondson

Leadership is never easy, but too many leaders succumb to myths that simply aren’t true. Ron Edmondson has mentored many leaders and shares a wealth of leadership wisdom that will help all leaders, but especially young leaders.

Subscribe for free now and you won’t miss Episode 159.

CNLP 158: Kara Powell on How to Tell if Your Church is Positioned to Draw Millennials and Her Personal Habits and Rhythms as a Leader and Mom

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