Commentary by Dr. Whitesel: “While probably not the originator of the phrase “find a need and fill it,” this was the principle that built The Chrystal Cathedral (formerly Garden Grove Community Church) in its early stages before other (and less organic) building and media emphasizes became the foci. In his book, “Your Church Has A Fantastic Future” (1986) Robert Schuller tells of planting a church in Southern California on the principle of: “find a need and fill it.” This attention to “need-meeting of non-churchgoers” grew the church. One day their usual rented space was no longer available to them and they had to temporary use a outdoor movie theatre. The media soon latched on to this emerging church seeming to play to the California image of automotive worship. Though fame and notoriety ensued, this interview with Robert Schuller shows he still credits “find a need and fill it” as the reason for the church’s growth (not the attractional lure that most people associate with it). Read this interview to learn more.
Dr. Robert Schuller: A Legacy of ‘Power’
By Cheryl Wilcox and Michael Little
The 700 Club
CBN.com – He is known all over the world as a possibility thinker. Robert Schuller was ordained in 1950 by the Reformed Church of America. In 1955 he headed west at the urging of his pastor and mentor Norman Vincent Peale. Schuller set his sights on California.
He preached his first Sunday service to 100 people all sitting in their cars. With only $500 to begin his ministry, Schuller rented out the Orange Drive-in Theater to have Sunday services. The location was affordable, available, and unconventional. It was perfect – church at a drive-in under the canopy of the California sun. Heaven smiled on their inauspicious beginning.
Fifty years later the sun is still shining on the believers worshipping at the Crystal Cathedral. The future holds great promise as the ministry team of Schuller and Schuller, father and son, work towards an eventual leadership transition.
Michael Little (CBN President): What is the key to your success?
Robert Schuller, Sr.: Anybody who succeeds is helping people. The secret to success is find a need and fill it; find a hurt and heal it; find a problem and solve it.
Little: What’s the hardest lesson you’ve had to learn in 50 years?
Schuller, Sr.: The hardest lesson is to continue to stay focused on the emotional needs of the non-believers…
Little: You’ve been the friend of many presidents of the United States along with heads of corporations? Has power been a temptation?
Schuller, Sr.: Oh no. Only if I need it to achieve my goal. Keep your eye on your goal and if you’re a Christian, as I am, then for God’s sake — literally, not profanely — you ask, ‘What is my calling?’ And then ‘What am I to do? What do I have to do?’ I want to build friendships. I want to come across as being a good illustration of what Jesus is like…
You can read more of this interview here by clicking: http://www.cbn.com/700club/Guests/Interviews/Robert_Schuller050505.aspx