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Personal Spiritual Assessment Tool

I’m involved in an interesting discussion on a DCE email discussion group I participate in.  The discussion started around the question, “How do we measure effectiveness in ministry if not by numbers of people coming?”  Numbers are easy to measure: they are either up or down. 

It’s not a perfect measurement, however.  There could be lots of people not coming, but growing spiritually through other means.  Or people could be coming for the wrong reasons.  We could probably up attendance 200% by offering $20/week for everyone who comes to church, but is that really spiritual growth?

We like to think of spiritual growth at First Trinity as steps on a journey.  What’s the next step in your spiritual life?  Where do I go from here? 

If spiritual growth is a journey, how do we measure it?

What if there were a personal spiritual assessment tool?  A PSAT if you will.  The tool would have questions that you answer in numerical form (scale of 1-6 style), but also include room for comments.  You would take the test now, and again in a year, theoretically measuring your progress in journey. 

Let’s say we’re developing the tool.  Here are some questions I’d love to hear your thoughts on:

  1. What areas should the assessment cover?  (Example: Prayer life, Worship, Serving others)
  2. What specific questions would you include?

Sound off in the comments!


  1. Darcy F

    I’m thinking Pastor had something like this that I took in Discover FT class. Can’t remember the questions, but it was that idea. How would you rate yourself now? Compared to a year ago? More answer will take more thought and my “Boss” wants me at church in 45 minutes, so it will have to wait!

  2. Karen Cassidy

    Sounds like you have a great starting point for discussion…number s are definitely not everything!! Quality not quantity is important. However, if people start leaving a place- that is an indication that we need to start looking at possible ways we are not meeting their spiritual needs. Certainly numbers can be useful starting points for discussion and especially for prayer which has to be the real starting point of any endeavor of this kind. What is God leading us to do? How can God use us? Which direction would He have us move? The answers may be shockingly different from the way we would have headed if we proceed ont he numbers alone.

  3. Karen Cassidy

    Forgot to add some questions.

    Do you feel you have a “place” at your church? In other words, do you feel connected to the Body of Christ?

    Can you identify one specific event or area of your life that has been profoundly affected by the power of God’s word and principles this year? (week, month, day)

    Do you feel that in your prayers you are building a closer relationship with the Lord?

  4. Cathi Brese Doebler

    How about some measurement of connections, such as:

    -How many personal friendship connections do you have at FT?


    -How many activities do you participate in per year (i.e. classes, events, life group meetings, retreats, etc.)

    -Who do you know personally on the staff at FT?

    The idea behind these types of questions would be measuring the “connections” the person being surveyed has with other people and opportunities at church. This might give you an idea of how people are connecting with and therefore identifying with certain events and people, etc. Knowing this could help you build on the strengths of where you already have strong connections.

  5. Bruce

    Did you read the study from Willow/ 1st one was called Reveal the second was Follow me. Sue has them. They attempt to measure your spiritual growth by measuring from the “taking the wrapper off the Bible to Christ Centered.”
    They spent a lot of money and changed the way they do things as a result.
    Northpoint does a lot in the same fashion.
    If you want to look at my copies I will bring them in.
    They are very telling.

  6. Mary Lou

    Just looked at your blog from Jan 2009 about developing a Personal Assessment Tool! We’re finally getting around to it!

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