Church staff must learn to do life outside of ministry work together if they hope to lead as a family.
After giving a breakout talk at CMConnect recently, I was asked about practical ideas for things staff can do to create healthy, meaningful relationships with one another. The purpose is to build family-type relationships.
So, here are some fun possibilities to consider:
Skeet shooting (yup, but not when your Lead Pastor is angry with you).
Have a staff member (and spouse) over for dinner just to get to know them better. Be sure to enquire about food allergies 🙂
Bowling (bonding with fun competition).
Have a regular staff meeting with zero ministry work on the agenda.
Pray for each other’s marriages, kids, finances, health, and ministry concerns. Don’t skimp on time with this!
Experience a personality assessment together and discuss the results openly. Talk through what you learn about leading together that you didn’t know before.
Volunteer in someone else’s ministry area! This expresses love & appreciation for that leader, and models ‘Kingdom Work’ to the rest of the church.
Would you add anything to this list?
Please leave a comment below. I love hearing from my readers 🙂
Note: If you are interested in receiving coaching on this topic or other ministry areas, feel free to contact me at BrentDumler@icloud.com. I’ll custom taylor something to fit your specific needs.
When individual ministries work together, the entire Church benefits.
This is something that’s been an ideal thought in ministry for years, but rarely becomes a reality. Think about it. How often do you find a Youth Pastor and Kids Pastor working together for the benefit of all students? Or when have you noticed the Worship Pastor taking time out of their busy day to help the college ministry improve their services?
I am blessed to have a team that really does operate as a family. As a network of family ministries, we share a common goal. We don’t have everyone off doing their own thing…hoping for a great outcome in individuals lives.
Here’s what it looks like for us.
Everyone owns the vision: Again, we share one common goal. For us, we call it a ‘common thread.’ This is what connects one ministry to another. It’s what helps a child to transition well from Kids Church to Student ministry…and from Students to our College ministry. We have hopes for the hand-off.
Communicate well: Our team leaders are constantly asking each other what they need from one another. They talk about what should be learned and experienced by a student by the time they transition to the next ministry area. If our Kids Pastor teaches what she wants without regard for what the Student Pastor will be teaching incoming middle school students, those students will have a difficult transition spiritually.
Do ministry together: Some examples of supporting each other in ministry are setting up tables and chairs for an event that doesn’t involve us, or spending time with another staff member problem-solving an issue in their ministry. It’s sacrificing some of your time to lend a hand to a co-worker. If they have a big event coming up, or you see them frantically making copies, punching holes, and stapling packets…..ask if they could use some help. Maybe you are having a busy day too. But by even offering 5-10 minutes of your time will tell them that you see their work as valuable. Sometime the offer becomes more support than the actual help.
Do life together: Ok, hear this loud and clear. This RARELY involves ministry work. 99.99999% of the time this needs to be talking about our Spiritual journey with Jesus, our kids and spouses, sharing our emotional highs and lows. Go to a ball game together. Hang out at a favorite coffee shop (not discussing work). Get together often, have fun, and pray for each other. This involves humility and authenticity.
Now, these things don’t just happen over night. It takes time and intentionality. Place each other on your Google calendar and regard that appointment as you would with anyone else in the church. Just because something else may come up and they are a co-worker, don’t view it as not a big deal to reschedule. They are a big deal. Keep that appointment.
When the church staff do life and ministry together as a real family, the church body will always benefit from it.
Where have you seen this in action? What would you add to the five components listed above?
Looking for a mentoring/coaching experience that will challenge you? Check out Infuse with Jim Wideman! Hurry…spots are filling up quickly.
Jim writes about Ten Fundamentals of authentic leadership in his book. Here are the Top Three that most resonated with me. Get the book and read about the other seven for yourself.
Leaders set an example – Jim says to give others something worth following. This is so true…and not just regarding ministry work. The way you and I tangibly live out our personal lives will greatly impact the trust level people have in us. The people we lead need to observe zero difference in our personality and character inside and out of the office.
Leaders grow spiritually – This is a topic I’ve personally come to understand & respect more in the past year than in my prior 20 years of ministry. Ministry doesn’t just begin with the Spirit moving us toward Kingdom work. The Holy Spirit lives in us as believers. If our lives are spiritual, then shouldn’t our work and leadership be reflective of how close we are growing toward our Father? It is absolutely critical that church leaders constantly revisit the spiritual disciplines to keep themselves sharp and useful.
Leaders are lifelong learners – This is as valuable to the young seminary grad as it is the 70 year old pastor who has been leading the same church body for 50 years. Read books on leadership (even some from secular authors). Study examples of Jesus and how he led the disciples. Attend a conference once a year. And finally, find yourself a life coach (mentor, or accountability partner). You and I don’t know everything, and the things we lack will limit the effectiveness of our leadership.
Comments are welcome below, or you can leave me a voice message HERE. God bless.