Church business and administration isn’t my favorite activity, it’s certainly not my strongest gift, and I’m guessing there are at least a few others out there like me… But in this podcast, I talk about how important all of that is for the success of the church and specifically for us at Brentwood Baptist.
I have always known being called to the ministry was a call of mercy. More than my calling being about “saving the world,” I think I was called mainly to save me. I think when God looked at me He decided that calling me to the ministry would be the only way to keep me close to home. Without knowing I was supposed to be at church every day, I think I would have simply wandered off and never found my way back. In ways most people don’t know, I’m grateful for my call.
For instance, there are places I don’t go and things I don’t do because I know there are people counting on me. There are times when I don’t say everything I’m thinking because I know people are listening to me. Don’t get me wrong – I’m far from perfect – but in the same way being a father made me a better man, because my sons were always watching me, being a pastor has made me a better Christian because there were people watching me.
The master plan is done. The vision statement has been voted on and the strategy laid out on the calendar. Everyone is excited and eager to go—now what?
Hard work. Hard work is what’s next.
Remember God’s word to Adam? “By the sweat of your brow you will earn your bread.” It’s no different for us. Sooner or later, success in anything—ministry included—gets down to hard work.
What we’re finding out is ministry is being echoed in the corporate world. Vision statements, good strategies and challenging goals are great, but they lead to nothing without execution. Once the plan is written, then the plan has to get done. Execution is what makes the difference.
A few days ago, I was talking with some seminary friends and we were complaining that all of the books that were hard to carry from class to class (back in the “old days”) are now available digitally. Now there are vast amounts of information available at the click of a few keys. This amount of data can be overwhelming and that’s a problem in itself, but there’s another problem. The data may be coming too fast.
A submarine can go too fast to hear its own sonar. Like submarines, pastors aren’t called to go fast, but to go deep. You can’t go fast and deep at the same time. Our world champions speed, but Christ calls us to live deeply.