Sunday, November 1, 2009

Bring yer A-game

There is not time in your ministry where you can let off. Yes, you do need to use your time wisely and get the proper amount of rest and down time. However, you cannot treat your job any differently than those who work for companies and other non-church organizations; your volunteers work hard too. In fact, they put 40+ hours in a week at their jobs and then give the church ministries a bunch of time on top of that. I remember my senior pastor would have us turn in time sheets to make sure we put in our hours each week. And then he expected us to put in an additional twenty or so hours on top of that because that is exactly what our volunteers did. I loved it.

Stellar athletes train overtime much of the time. They know that if they want to be the best and compete at a level with the best then they have to put in that time. Artists spend tons of time on the little details, often throwing away a piece of art and starting from scratch. Architects know that they must work hard and be precise so not to fail at keeping others safe. We have to do the same. If we are the ones who are working to save and nurture the souls of others, for eternity in the strength and will of the Lord, we too cannot take our jobs lightly.

Don't expect kids to come to your group if you are sloppy; don't expect others to give their time to the same kind of ministry. They know wussup. And I know that we all have hang-ups. I know that your church has insane rules that don't let you do stuff that you know could help your ministry. You know, like not letting the youth use the big sanctuary or fields, for fear that you ill mess them up. But we have to deal with it. I know that there are rules imposed upon your ministry that you think are dumb. So do I. But you need to work through that madness and do ministry anyway.

I remember when we had so many kids coming to our group that we either needed to move to a bigger place, which we did not have available, or we needed another nite to split the kids up, which also was not available. So I had to watch as we could not capacitate the amount of kids that were coming. The result is that we would lose kids because they were as frustrated as we were that we did not get the space needed. What did I do? I did my best to make the space that we needed. It did not always work the way that we wanted it to. But it is all we could do. But one thing we did not do was give up. You need to work through it. A bad attitude won't get you anything at all.

Cobb always made sure we were on our A-game. At the beginning of my time at the church in my early years we did stuff to move through the hard situations – before they happened. He knew what we were up against most of the time before it happened. And that was the key. If you can be ready for stuff then you can head it off. You have to be intuitive or have someone who is. Luckily, I had Cobb.

If you have a superior who you report to then I hope that person is keeping you accountable. If not, do it yourself. Get some discipline. Much of what I do with pastors now is help them be accountable, to themselves, their superiors and their volunteers. If you are on top of stuff then it will be seen by others in your ministry and transfer down to them. If not, well, you know what will happen.

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