Studies show that when you put together a piece of furniture vs. simply purchasing already assembled furniture you are far more likely to keep the piece of furniture that you put the labor into. This is known as the IKEA effect. When we got the Certificate of Occupancy for our multi-site campus almost 200 volunteers showed up to dust, mop, assemble, clean, trim hedges, mow, and a host of other much needed duties. There was a sense of ownership and an excitement in the air as people were saying “this is my church”.
When we “own” something we invest and maintain and care for it in ways that go far beyond simply being a consumer. The IKEA effect causes us to value and hold on to something because we have put hard work into it. Our Local Church should be a place of ownership, a community of lives invested and sweat equity. When you have a hand in building your local church you are far more likely to care for her upkeep, long-term health and well-being.