Sunday, May 20, 2007

Now What? Leadership Multiplication

If we are going to fulfill the vision that God has given us to become actively involved in planting churches to reach the 100,000 people in Jackson County with no church family, there are certain preconditions we need to satisfy in our own church--we need to grow, we need unity, and we need to multiply leadership.

I believe that everything in a church rises and falls on the quality of its leadership. Leaders, of course, are not just the pastors, but the elders, the ministry leaders, the teachers and small group leaders. Leaders carry the weighty responsibility of influencing others, and that responsibility can be used well or poorly. When the leaders are spiritually mature, rooted in scripture, full of wisdom, and passionate about advancing God's agenda, the church will be full of God's power and will grow. Conversely, when the leaders are spiritually weak, rooted in tradition, full of themselves, and passionate about advancing their personal agenda, the church will be full of dysfunction and impotence.

To be able to provide quality leadership to a daughter church, and at the same time maintain the health and vitality of the mother church, we will need to have more leaders--there simply aren't enough right now. But leaders are not made overnight. Leadership develops over time through investment, experience, mentoring, accountability, and equipping. So to have enough leaders for both churches, we need to make more leaders now.

We currently have a process for developing additional elders as well as a process for Core Team leaders to train and mentor their own replacements. What we are currently lacking are people who are willing to make the commitment to step into leadership. There are a host of reasons why people may avoid leadership:

  • Some may not feel spiritually qualified. Indeed, not just anyone is qualified to be a leader. It takes someone who has some degree of spiritual maturity. However, many who are qualified feel that they fall short because they're not a "super-saint." At our church, we understand that no one is perfect, and we don't expect perfection. Our expectations for leaders are clearly spelled out in the Church Structure (ask me if you don't have a copy), and there are no "unwritten" rules or additional standards you have to live up to.
  • Some may have served in the past. Many people with past leadership experience no longer want to serve as a leader, and that's a real tragedy, in my opinion. I know that some may have had negative experiences that they don't want to repeat; others feel that they have "done their time," and now others should do it. In both cases, such individuals look at leadership as a burden--but if God has shaped you for leadership, you will not find satisfaction apart from leading others. Come talk to me if you are restless and dissatisfied in your current role.
  • Some are afraid. They are afraid they might try their best and fail. They are afraid they won't know how to lead others. Some are afraid they lack the knowledge, the training, or the understanding to direct a ministry. And these are understandable fears. But it should be recognized that at PCC no one does ministry alone. All leaders at all levels have others that they can turn to, that they can seek encouragement, advice, and support from, and that they can learn from. We provide training, support, and encouragement to all our leaders.

At some point, these hurdles will need to be jumped, as more people accept the responsibility to step into leadership. If no one does, we can keep our current church functioning, but we will never be able to expand beyond ourselves and make any kind of dent in the 100,000 people in Jackson County with no church family. We will be just another church that makes no difference to its community, and that is a very unsatisfying vision to me.

We currently are seeking those who would be interested in serving in the following areas:

  • Elder
  • Outreach Core Team Leader
  • Community Core Team Leader

In addition to these, we are always open to people who want to serve as members of any of the Core Minsitry Teams, which direct the ministries that fall under their various areas:

  • Service
  • Outreach
  • Worship
  • Community
  • Discipleship
  • Life Development (children & youth)
  • Finance
  • Property

We are praying that God will raise up the leaders we need, for without proper leadership, the vision will fail to become reality. Please prayerfully consider if God would have you give yourself to one of these ministries. As you pray, talk with me or Pastor Brent, or one of the current elders (Mike DeKarske, John Fisher) so that we can pray alongside you and see how God might lead and equip our church.

"Here is a trustworthy saying: If anyone sets his heart on being an overseer, he desires a noble task." 1 Timothy 3:1 NIV

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