Why 'Collective Might' Is the Future of the Church

When I helped develop Angie’s List (now Angi’s), a database enabling users to search for home service contractors, I knew those listing their services weren’t necessarily happy being displayed alongside their competitors. Yet something unexpected happened as more and more opted in: they built a community that was benefitting millions of people looking for home help. This, in turn, benefitted the service providers as well.

In my work with other large chains (Blockbuster, Boston Market, and Einstein/Noah Bagel to name just a few), I became fascinated with a concept I call “collective might,” which is simply the idea that joining together unlocks benefits we wouldn’t have access to individually. Or in biblical terms, “Two are better than one because they have a good return for their labor” (Ecclesiastes. 4:9). 

And in business terms, collective might is really about cooperative contribution. It involves consolidating contributions (money, information, goods, and services) to get the benefit of scale—merging and streamlining so that everyone wins. Collective might isn’t about uniformity, that is, every person doing the same things toward a common goal. Instead, it’s about the unity of cooperative contribution, the body being the body with each contributor showing up in their unique strengths toward a common goal. 

Collective might is critical to the mission of the Church today. In a time when leaders are tired, weary of division, and unable to scale the ways they want to serve, leveraging the power of the collective—with each of us playing our unique part—is the best way forward. And collective might doesn’t just apply to large-scale ecosystems like the Church, but rather, it can be released at every level—from cities and associations to any given church and its members. 

For collective might to be released, certain factors need to be present, namely relationships and connectivity. 

This is the focal point of our work at Gloo: to release the collective might of the big C Church. Every day, we connect ministry leaders to resources, people, data and insights, and funding so their people and communities flourish and their organizations thrive. 

One great example of collective might is our work with Churches Care, which has pooled together cooperative funding and local communities to connect people who are looking for help to local churches and ministry partners. It starts with individuals, who are actively searching for help in areas like anxiety, toxic relationships, and loneliness on social media, through search engines, and at local events. When they opt in to be connected to help, there’s a large network of local church responders, resources, and other ministry responders available. Gloo connects the person to a caring responder or a next-step resource. At the time of this publication, there have been over 340,000 people connected. That’s collective might at work. 

A pastor recently shared a text with me that he received from a church volunteer responding to someone who reached out through one of our partner campaigns. It read, “Hey man, I got my first call for prayer. It went well. Thank you for the opportunity to serve in this way. I haven’t been able to meet with someone like this and pray with them since the pandemic began. Strangely, I feel alive again!” The volunteer was surprised by this new way to be part of God’s work. 

When we release collective might, we create new opportunities and an environment where people can feel alive again. Churches Care is just one of many partners that are showing up in unity, not uniformity, to accomplish missional purposes.  At Gloo, we know we’ve only scratched the surface of the big C Church’s potential to serve the community and help people flourish. 

Everyone’s calling is different. You may serve on the frontline of a ministry, helping people grow through a small group or a recovery program. You may be a church planter in rural America or in a bustling city. Maybe you’re an influencer pushing out great content. Or perhaps you’re a donor looking for ways to steward well for kingdom impact. Regardless, we need each other to release the power of our collective might. If two are better than one, then know that you have a role to play.

Connect with friends or colleagues and see where you can contribute your time, talents, or treasure. And watch as God does things you never thought were possible.