Second – do what you do and be what you are. Huh???
Paul puts an awesome word picture together in 1 Corinthians 12. He tells us to look at things like we look at our own bodies. It’s pretty funny actually. Can you picture if you were just a giant eyeball? Sure, you could see pretty well but you couldn’t hear anything or even communicate what you’ve seen. Or say you’re just a big ole mouth … blah, blah blah. You could talk a lot and hear no one and see nothing. Picture yourself just a hand. Sure, you could give someone a hand but chances are that you would never know that anyone needed a hand in the first place.
I like how he even gets into the parts we can’t see. How’s your liver? No one even thinks about their liver until it’s not doing its job and then everything shutst down.
Are you a good listener? Find a way to listen! Good at teaching? Teach! Feel compelled to pray for people? Dare to pray! Like to organize and make checklists? Do it! Hate being in front of people and prefer to lend a hand behind the scenes? I love you like I love my liver!
Do you get the gist? See what Paul is saying? Let’s stop worrying about what we can’t do and instead offer what we can. If you’re like me, operating in areas where you are not gifted can burn you out fast.
Third, replace yourself.
As a pastor, I have a challenge in front of me. I am supposed to be equipping and training people to do what they do and help them find places to do it. If I do everything myself I am missing the boat and limiting ministry and maybe even missing the point of ministry altogether.
That makes me ask, “Am I replacing myself?” I should be. If I do not offer the people I am discipling the very real opportunity to lead, I am doing little more than filling their gas tanks. When will I hand over the keys and say, “Here, you drive.”
Out of love we go.
In going we disciple.
In discipling we equip.
In equipping we prepare.
In preparing we transfer.
In transferring we set free.
In setting free we multiply.
In multiplying we impact more lives.
Teacher, are you replacing yourself by preparing someone to take over?
Pastor, are you training and trusting God enough to hand over the keys?
Worship leader, are you bringing someone alongside to step in and take the reins?
Servant, are you helping someone else learn to serve and stepping aside to let them?
A leader is great, not because of his or her power, but because of his or her ability to empower others. John Maxwell
For many of us, releasing control is the toughest part of leadership. When we do not, our young leaders, feeling like they are not really needed, eventually lose interest and move on leaving us with the ironic exhaustion we’ve created by never letting them lead or serve. We stunt their growth!
Multiplication is an amazing thing. If you don’t believe me try giving me a penny tomorrow and then double it every day for a month. 1 cent, 2 cents, 4 cents and so on. It will be a great lesson using only a bunch of pennies, right?
Go ahead. I double dag dare you.