Archives For Bible
- It’s important that whoever leads the team have mentoring, disciple-making, and high-level people skills in their repertoire. As the leader at our church, I’ve worked hard to try and increase my skills in these areas. However, I’ve seen some churches hire the “most successful” pastor on their staff and then that leader struggles big-time because he’s more about the end-game ministry that he is about the big picture leading of a team.
- It HAS to be the long-term vision of the senior leaders of the church. If it’s more of a pencil-pushing delegation of tasks, then it won’t work long term. Sounds harsh, but I’ve seen it bear out many times. If the Senior Pastor is simply trying to reward excellence by allowing the family teams to merge, then it won’t work. It has to come from a real desire to see ministries working with the families in the church come together to lock arms and combine resources to help everyone be successful.
- Be prepared for change. Anytime that another layer is added between a pastor and the senior leaders of the church, it can get tricky. NextGEN ministry is no exception.
- It can work. In the places where I’ve worked, when we started communicating as one team to one family, the families in our church began to notice. It starts with simple things like a church-wide family picnic with all the family teams working together; and then moves into more strategic activities. Yes, I advocate for food-related family and church events.
- It’s important to involve the entire staff of the NextGEN team into the conversation for the future. Together at the same table, sharing the same vision, and creating the same goals for all of the team. It can bring people together, and help everyone understand each other in a new way. (I’ve used the Orange Leaders Handbook to help us craft a strategy that fit our church.)
- There are tons of churches moving into this model of combining what were solo ministries into combined ministries, and there are tons of models of what that should look like. It’s my believe though, that each church is different and therefore each church has to tweak, create, and adjust the models to fit their churches’ over all vision, mission, and values. There is no one-size-fits-all when it comes to church staff structures.
It’s impossible to tell people what I do without the words team and teamwork being heard. I work in a church so I work with people that go to that church. I work in those environments for kids and students, so I work with kids and students. That much is obvious. But what I really do is lead the teams that lead those areas specifically. To further complicate it, I lead a team of leaders that lead their own teams. Take me to coffee sometime, and I’ll tell you about this team of all-stars I have the privilege of leading now.
But, what is a team? A team is collection of people gathered together to accomplish one singular purpose. Easy enough to understand, right? If I’m creating a hockey team, I need a collection of hockey players. My team won’t work if I put 3 hockey players with 20 people that can’t ice skate. Get that? A team is a collection/group/cohort that works together to accomplish/do/achieve one singular purpose.
Let’s go to the Bible on this. Teamwork matters.
- Ecclesiastes 4:9-12: “Two are better off than one, because together they can work more effectively. If one of them falls down, the other can help him up. But if someone is alone and falls, it’s just too bad, because there is no one to help him. If it’s cold, two can sleep together and stay warm but how can you keep warm by yourself. Two men can resist an attack that would defeat one man alone. A rope of three cords is hard to break.” (TEV) We are better together than we are on our own.
- Nehemiah 4: When the Israelites were rebuilding the wall in Jerusalem, the work got tough and they got discouraged. Finally, they just gave up. So Nehemiah reorganized the work into teams. Half would stand guard with their spears and swords and protect everyone. The other half would work. Then they’d alternate their positions. He posted everyone by groups and families, so they could encourage and support each other.
- Mark 6:7: When Jesus sent people out in ministry; he sent them out in twos. He did not expect them to minister alone.
- Acts 24: Paul specifically mentions seven people who were part of him ministry team. He brought others along, not only to train them, but also to keep him encouraged.
BTW: There is a great book by John Maxwell, titled “Teamwork 101″; you should check it out.