Monday, September 29, 2014

Leading & Serving On A Team

I’ve worked for and with various leaders over the years and each and every one was different. They led differently. Some were passive while others were headstrong. They had different priorities for leading an organization. 

As an employee/team member, I found the differences between their leadership styles made it difficult for me to determine how success was being measured and how to make a good impression.

Although every leader is unique, there’s one thing they all have in common:

They all value people who solve problems.

Understanding this principle is key for making a difference on the team. 

We spend a lot of time (sometimes an unhealthy amount) thinking about ways we can impress the people around us. But we won’t make an impression by simply showing up when we're told, putting our heads down, and simply completing our to-do list. Accomplishing these responsibilities are essential, but you’ll never maximize your potential impact by simply clocking in and out every day and doing only what you're asked to do.

If you want to stand out or make a good impression, do more than the basics: Solve problems! Your leader knows every problem your church is facing, which can be overwhelming and stressful. If you take some of the load off of them by solving a few problems, you’ll stand out.

Look for the problems that are presenting themselves and make a plan to solve them. Ask your leader how you can help. Take on a servant’s heart and make your church run smoothly for the good of everyone, and you’ll stand out.

Serving on staff is a privilege and a responsibility.  Here are some strategic things you can do to make yourself an indispensable staff/team member.

1. Find the most important objective your pastors want to accomplish and put yourself in the middle of it.
  • Volunteer to lead a team to accomplish the objective.
  • Be a good listener. For instance, if you hear frustration from your leaders on why the church has a low retention rate for visitors, make note of it and take initiative to help find a solution.
  • See with your leaders eyes. Be close enough to them relationally & professionally that you're picking up on clues & cues.
2. Make strategic connections for your pastors.
  • Make sure these relationships are life-giving and not things that give them more work.
  • Make sure they are strategic and contribute to accomplishing their present objectives or future dreams.
3. Bring more solutions than problems.
  • When you see a problem, it’s tempting to let your pastors know right away about it. Instead, stop and brainstorm solutions. When you tell them the problem, offer several ideas to solve the problem. And when you offer your ideas, volunteer to be a part of the solutions.
4. Think team, not solo.
  • Don't always talk about your needs. Instead, offer to sacrifice for other team members or departments. Find ways you can show your ministry is not singular in focus but recognizes it’s part of the whole.
  • If you're passionate about your area of ministry, you'll want to talk about it to everyone...especially your leaders. If your leader never hears you talking, with enthusiasm, about your area of ministry or the church as a may mean you're merely collecting a paycheck or hanging on to a title instead of fulfilling the purpose you declared you were called to.
  • If you spend more time talking about everyone else's ministry (national & local) and seem to know who's who, where they are, what they're doing and who they're running with MORE than you talk about or promote your own local church then maybe you need to revisit why you are in your current role.
  • If you are passionate about what you're doing everyone will see it, hear it and to your own credit...get tired of hearing about it. However, it will be apparent that you are focused on your assignment and it burns in your heart. That will bring joy to your leaders. 
5. Carry out your assignments & duties with excellence. 
  • Every leader must know the condition of their department (flock). Be thou diligent to know the state of thy flocks, and look well to thy herds. (Proverbs 27:23 KJV)
  • How is your department/team doing?  Are you on top of your duties/responsibilities?
  • How well do you know the people you're leading? For example: as a youth pastor, I knew where each of my students went to school, what sports they were involved in, who their friends were & what issues they were struggling with. I contacted each of them on a weekly basis (the involved & the uninvolved) to stay connected to them while helping my pastor keep the entire family built up.
  • Relationships have to be forged on the benches before they can be trusted in the trenches.
  • It's the behind the scenes work, extra time spent & careful planning that yields results. 
Are you serving in your ministry role with the same level of excellence and expectations you do with your secular work? Are you compromising the trust and position you've been given with slothfulness, disinterest, sloppiness or a "just enough to get by" approach?

We don’t become indispensable by jockeying for power or claiming our rights, but by humbly and intentionally serving our pastors and our team.

We are members one of another! 

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Holy Ghost Helium

So many of you love the Lord with all your heart and you wouldn't think of ever turning your back on the Lord.  You're doing your best to serve Him and please Him and you never thought you'd reach a place where your JOY felt depleted. 

The truth is, it happens to everyone at some point or another.  Even David, the great psalmist, prophet and king understood more about praise and worship and the presence of God than almost anyone living.  And yet, one day he found that his joy had leaked out.

Even then, David knew the source of his JOY!  In Psalm 51:12 he cried out to God to restore unto him the joy of his salvation and uphold him with His free spirit.  See...the devil knows that JOY is a tremendous source of POWER for every believer!

In Nehemiah 8:10 we find that the JOY of the Lord is our STRENGTH!  Strength to do what? Strength to BOUNCE BACK!  JOY can give you BOUNCE BACK POWER or even GET BACK UP POWER!

As long as you have the JOY of the Lord, no matter how hard the devil hits you, you will BOUNCE BACK and be STRONGER than ever!

What else can the JOY of the LORD do for you?  He can give you TAKE YOU THROUGH POWER!  It doesn't matter what you have to go through in life, the JOY of the Lord will give you the ability to keep WALKING, PUSHING, PRAYING, PRAISING, SOWING and GOING!  We all have to through stuff sometimes.

Thirdly, he can give you TAKE YOU OVER POWER!  The JOY of the Lord gives WINGS to your FAITH and give you the ability to RISE above the storm, trials and attacks!  When God gives you's like saying you have HOLY GHOST HELIUM!  It's the INTERNAL SUBSTANCE that gives us LIFTING POWER!

You have the POWER to break the gravitational pull that wants to drag you down into worry, fear, depression & discouragement! 

Joseph pulled from the WELL of JOY and was able to overcome every wall and adversity! (Genesis 49:22 "Joseph is a fruitful bough, even a fruitful bough by a well; whose branches run over the wall:")

When you have the JOY of the Lord, it's like an EFFERVESCENT alka seltzer tablet!  All the sudden, you become ALIVE!  Friends, that kind of life is CONTAGIOUS!  If anything should distinguish us from the world it should be THE JOY OF THE LORD!

When you can go through the same TESTS, TRIALS and HARDSHIPS as the world and not trip out, flip out or freak out...they're going to want what you have!

Many of you have been going through all kinds of difficulties, hardships, trials and just plain old attacks from Hell and it seems like you get victory in one area then you're attacked in another area.  You feel like you're in continual you're caught up in a spin cycle in the washing machine!

Why does the devil attack you like that?  Here's why...he wants to WEAR YOU OUT! Daniel 7:25 says "he shall speak great words against the most high and shall wear out the saints!"

None of us are exempt!  We're all in the same boat!  We've all been hit hard, not just in one area but in multiple areas!  The truth is IT WAS A GOOD HIT!  The devil hit you where it hurt and you felt it and it stunned you!  You see, the devil's been after your strength.  He's been after your BOUNCE BACK POWER!  He's after your GO THROUGH POWER and your TAKE YOU OVER POWER!  He's been trying to steal your HOLY GHOST HELIUM...but YOU'RE GETTING IT ALL BACK!

You're getting your WINGS back!
You're getting the PEP in your STEP back!
You're getting your FIRE back in your FURNACE!
You're getting the POWER back in your PUNCH!
You're getting your HOLY GHOST HELIUM back!
You're getting the WIND back in your SAILS!

The devil may have hit you hard but that was only round one.  You might have been beat up pretty bad in the last round, but the fight isn't over!  You've got your FIGHT BACK!  You've got your JOY BACK!

The devil made one big mistake.  He hit you hard, he knocked you down and he almost killed you.  But he made one mistake...he left you breathing!  He should have killed you when he had the chance! long as you have can PRAISE THE LORD!  If you can praise the Lord, you can access the POWER OF GOD and when you access the power of God...GOD IS GOING TO TURN IT AROUND!

This is your time for a DIVINE REVERSAL!
Your JOY is going to CATAPULT you into victory!

Friday, September 12, 2014

5 Things

Be not rash with your mouth, nor let your heart be hasty to utter a word before God, for God is in heaven and you are on earth. Therefore let your words be few. (Ecclesiastes 5:2 ESV)

Thursday, September 11, 2014

5 Things

@RussellHylton: God has a call on our life that encompasses both our ministry & our vocation. #5Things