Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Which stack do I put this one?

I work a cruddy job. The biggest thing I don't like about it is not having enough to do to fill the day. I could probably do all that needed to be done in about 4 hours, but rules are rules, and I need to stay 8. I learned very quickly to never ask the supervisor if there is anything extra that needs to be done when I have run out of things to do, else I will find myself cleaning out carts that don't need cleaning or sweeping floors that I swept that morning. Instead, I stick to my responsibilities and stretch them out to fit the time I have and thus fly under the radar. One of my most favorite concepts in the New Testament is the idea of the priesthood of believers, that is, every person of faith has direct access into the holiest of places, and therein can speak to and receive directly from the Almighty. This puts us all on equal standing. But somewhere in the task of equipping these saints, have we put more emphasis on training them to do church work than on finding out what these dear people are hearing from God and in turn, helping get them into position to serve out of that calling. In some ways, I wonder if we have problems motivating men to serve because they see church like my job, nothing much important to do, yet fearful of saying anything because they don't just want to do grunt work for which there seems to be no point. The intent is good, I guess, but how much can we really find out about a man's heart by having him fill out a spiritual gift survey? We teach a class, hand out a multiple-choice quiz, pick them all up and sort them out. All the teachers are put in the children's ministry stack. All the servants are placed in the children's ministry stack. All the merciful are piled on top of these in the children's ministry stack. All the prophets are round filed. All the leaders are stamped with a question mark and the rest are divided up among the staff. We as leaders must keep in mind that everyone by faith has access to the presence and voice of God. Do we encourage them to listen and trust them to act on what they hear, even if it does not fit into our program? Or will we somehow just try and fit them into what we are doing?


GuyMuse said...

One of the things I have learned as one of my missionary tasks is that of empowering people for ministry. They will come to me "the missionary" asking permission to do something they feel is of the Lord. I have the easy job of saying, "yes, do it..." and encouraging them with a few helpful tips of advise. It is always tempting to get everyone on board with what we are trying to accomplish, but I am learning that by empowering them to do what the Lord is leading them to do, we usually end up walking in the same direction anyway!

Watchman said...


oh that there would be more leaders like you. may your tribe increase! thanks for the comments.