Is it me, or are pastors’ mindsets starting to turn slightly? In a poll with more than 200 pastors responding, 75% reported feeling optimistic or hopeful coming into 2023 (numbers taken from my Red Letter Pastor’s Group and Carey Nieuwhof’s Art of Leadership Academy).
Praise God! We’ve had some long years these past few years, so I am glad many of you are feeling optimistic coming into 2023! And, even if you are not quite feeling hopeful yet, I’ve got a question for you:
Yes, you heard me right! Our hope is that you run hard right now, celebrate the birth of Jesus like never before, and finish the year strong. You can do all this because when you come into 2023, you’ve already got 692 hours of work (hour breakdown below) done for you!
As you plan your 2023 calendar, January is the perfect time to do a churchwide challenge. Seriously, over the past four Januarys, we’ve literally helped propel hundreds of churches into the New Year with a 40-day challenge to help them become greater disciples. Along the way, these challenges have increased their small groups, grown their worship attendance, and brought unity to their church as they’d never seen before. Amazingly, all those things happened without bringing more exhaustion or weariness to the church staff!
So, in light of that, let us help you start 2023 with a BANG! Here are five reasons why launching a 40-day challenge in the New Year is perfect for you!
Oh, we have a 48-hour coupon that is good for any challenge at the bottom of this blog.
- Get 692 hours back for your church staff!
It would take you and your team at least 692 hours to create the first drafts of all the resources and daily materials needed for 40 days. Or you can partner with us, launch a 40-day challenge in your church, and utilize the thousands of hours we’ve put into each 40-day challenge. Plus, we’ve got the proven results of more than 800 churches!
We’ve created these 40-day challenges to be as turnkey as possible so pastors and their church staff can give their all in other matters. Included with our 40-Day Challenges are FREE sermon manuscripts and videos, small group materials, kids’ curriculum, graphics package, etc. In addition, there are kids’ workbooks available to help kids learn and be challenged in their faith. We’ve even created training videos for FREE for you to help you learn how to implement a 40-day challenge in your setting. Here’s the estimated time investment it would take for you to produce first drafts of similar things we’ve created:
- 6 sermon manuscripts: 20 hours/per sermon = 120 hours
- 6 sermon videos: 3 hours/per video = 18 hours
- 6 weeks of kid’s curriculum: 15 hours/per week = 90 hours
- 6 weeks of small group study guides: 3 hours/per week = 18 hours
- 6 weeks of teen small group study guides: 3 hours/per week = 18 hours
- 6 weeks of small group video writing, filming, and editing: 20 hours/per video = 120 hours
- 100+ graphics: .5 hours/graphic = 50 hours
- 12 How-to-Videos for how to launch a 40-day challenge: 1/hour per video = 12 hours
- 41 daily devotionals: 3 hours/per daily devotional = 123 hours (for first drafts)
- 41 daily kid’s devotionals: 3 hours/per daily devotional = 123 hours (for first drafts)
- People are open to change at the beginning of the year.
Let’s face it! Many people set new goals and resolutions as the new year begins.
There are no better goals, resolutions, or habits to put into place than what Jesus calls us toward. The success behind accomplishing New Year goals and resolutions (which Jon Acuff, author of Finish, says is only 8%) is those who have just enough discipline to create new habits. Not all habits are created equal, however. As people are thinking about the new year and bolstering their faith, there is no one greater to learn habits from than Jesus Himself. So why not invest 40 days into the life, words, and habits of Jesus to give your people something that will make next year their most significant year ever!
- Nothing brings unity like Jesus!
The last few years have been ripe with division. Staying unified has been challenging, whether due to opinions on the pandemic, masks, vaccines, or rising racial and political battles. I recently heard thought leader Carey Nieuwhof say that only 9% of pastors reported no division amongst their churches in the last 18 months. The answer for how to cut through division is Jesus. As we study the life of Jesus, people will find themselves immersed into not only a great model and teacher but a great Savior and Lord. The more people experience Jesus, the more unified your church will be.
- A resource for in-person and digital!
The church has gotten more complicated as we seek to create engaging in-person worship experiences while still ministering to our online audience. Our 40-day challenges are meant to make your Sunday services great and tie your physically divided churches together during the week with ready-made small group materials, daily readings, social media posts, etc. Churches of the future will be looking for resources to not only help them have a tremendous in-person experience on the weekend but also help their people Monday-Saturday.
- A 40-Day Challenge will Produce Results All Year Long!
We’ve heard countless stories of people who have completed a challenge in our books that will then go on and continue to implement the same challenges after the fact. So what can you expect? There will be people in your church as a result of these 40-day experiences that will grow in their relationship with God, forgive someone they never thought they would be able to forgive, serve in a more meaningful way, be generous towards your church and community, and share the Gospel with those in their lives. As individuals grow in their faith and become greater disciples, it will transform your church!
What are you waiting for?
Take the next step. If you are a pastor, you can request a FREE copy of a 40-day challenge, and we will mail it to you. No strings attached. And if you decide to move forward with a church challenge, we’d be honored to work with you. We have some ready-made church packs ready to go at this link.
And, for reading this far along, we’ve got a coupon for $100 off any order on our website over $1000. So, start with our bestseller Red Letter Challenge, move forward with Being Challenge, or embark on a 40-day journey leading to freedom with Forgiving Challenge. Just enter “NewYear100” at checkout.
If your New Year is already spoken for, Lent 2023 is right around the corner too. So lock it in now, and we’ll still honor that coupon above. But hurry, it’s only good for 48 hours.
Let’s start 2023 by bringing people back into a relationship with the incredible God we serve!