>While talking with a church planting friend last night, I learned some things about my roles, responsibilities, and future.
He was telling me about spending some time with the band, Big Daddy Weave and a conversation they were having. One of the members mentioned doing concerts and revivals at different churches and what they learned. Some churches, even though the dynamics and the issues weren’t quite right would have these awesome revivals. Other churches would work and work their guts out and have no revival. So the conclusion he came to is that God will never go “ahead of the leader.”
- This lead me to my first conclusion, it is a denominational problem. The denomination is broken and we will never experience revival until that is fixed. It isn’t my responsibility to fix it.
My friend also talked about a retired pastor on his leadership team. They were working through some issues of spiritual drought and this retired pastor reminded my friend that his job is to seek God and to get from God the direction and food for the people.
- This led me to my second conclusion. Which is in line with what Andy Stanley says. I need to spend 80% of my time doing what only I can do. That is to lead, preach, and recruit leaders. If I’m not spiritually connected and fed, this church isn’t going anywhere.
So, from that conversation, here are some principles:
- It isn’t my job to fix the denomination. I often wake up in the morning thinking, I have to singlehandedly fix the church – and my workaholism kicks in and I vow that I will either fix it – or die. Like my friend Ron used to say, “I feel like all the lines on all the highways have to be painted and I’m the only one hired to do it.” I have often felt that way myself — but no more. This is God’s problem and the leadership of the church’s problem. It isn’t my job to fix the church. It isn’t my responsibility. The denominational leaders are accountable to God for their leadership – not me. I am only accountable if I don’t speak up – when God tells me to speak up. I am accountable for the spiritual leadership of Common Ground — and I need to submit to the authority above me — even when I think there needs to be a different tack taken.
- This should help me relax. CG was experimental, but we got out ahead of the leadership. Last week I was saying that “if I knew then, what I know know, I would have don’t things differently.” I changed my mind. We did what God asked us to do – it isn’t our fault or God’s misreading of the situation that caused us to get where we are. If the leadership needs to better prepare the way, that is their issue and they are accountable to God for that — not me or my leaders.
- My prayer life, my QT3, my time with the Lord, my sermon prep time, and my time with my family have to come before anything else.
- I reiterate — first it is my relationship with God – without that I can’t take care of myself and if I don’t take care of myself, I can’t take care of my family – and if I don’t take care of my family, the church becomes just a job.
- Second is my time with my family. I cannot sacrifice my family for sermon prep, counseling, meetings, etc. My family is too important.
- Finally — but not last, is my job, my ministry, my calling. When the above two are taken care of, then I can be more efficient and more productive in all areas of my life – and Common Ground is more likely to thrive.
Let’s see what else I’ll learn on this trip!!