We live in particularly revolutionary days; we hear the voice of God commissioning us as ambassadors to a rapidly materialising future; only God is unchanging – the world moves along, the church takes new forms, and we ourselves become new people, according to Dave Travis in his book What’s Next: A Look Over the Next Hill for Innovative Churches and Their Leaders. The book is aimed predominantly at leaders of large churches, helping them to understand where current trends are leading.
After discussing the ways in which the world of ministry has changed in the years since 2000 and the current global and local contexts, the author provides a set of predictions, starting with “More-Of”s, then moving on to Authenticators, the Obvious, and Speculations, before finishing with Wildcards. Interesting predictions include:
- More megachurches and multi-site churches – the number of churches with more than 2,000 attenders continues to rise
- More Internet campuses, and online campus pastors and teams will be quite common within a decade
- Increased global connections for churches, stimulated by cheap communication and travel
- More church planting, including plants started in Western countries by non-Western missionaries
- A higher degree of transparency in matters of church finances
- Significantly increased use of web connectivity, mobile apps and social media
- Discipleship in generosity
As the CEO of Leadership Network, Dave Travis spends his time working with leaders from large numbers of innovative churches, so he probably has a better idea of where the future lies for large churches than almost anyone else. While very short, the book is filled with interesting ideas and written from a positive and encouraging perspective. Any church leader wanting to look forward to the future with excitement should read it.