I think that you can tell a lot about a church by what kind of values it says it has along with what values it silently lives out. One of these things that I've observed in churches over the past 10 years (that has become important to me) is its commitment to learning.
I'm looking for a church that is committed to the continued learning and intellectual growth of its staff and congregation.
I don't think that anyone would argue that our world is in a constant state of change. And it's not a new philosophy in ministry that we need to constantly find new ways to meet the needs of this changing world. Nor is it a surprise that one of the best ways to to do that is through education. So then, why is it that some churches still adopt an ethos of "we've got this figured out"? My best guess is that they're comfortable in how they do things and are afraid that change will bring discomfort. Editor's Note: Duh.
Some staffs that I've been apart of have encouraged their employees to continue the learning process by sending them to conferences or allowing them margins in which to continue their scholastic education. I'm not saying that these are the only ways, but certainly they are ways.
If a church wants to grow, then it has to change. If a church wants to change, then it has to learn. And I want to be a part of a place that wants to do that...