Tuesday, August 18, 2015

How to Find a way to Minister

Some people try to figure out what a community or church needs and then set up a program to meet that need. That sounds good but depends on hiring people who are not necessarily called, passionate or gifted to serve the identified needs.

Here is the answer: Find passionate, interested, gifted people and TURN them LOOSE!

Find someone, anyone that will be a passionate person for the cause and support them. At College Hill Church we had a woman that was intensely passionate about serving the poor and outcast. Her name was Karen Lane and she was a tiger about serving the poor, handicapped, hungry, minority  population.

Karen was a diamond in the rough. Thus, she was not very Presbyterian in her approach to advocating a new ministry to these people. The Elders and Trustees were a careful group, as they are called to be with the Lord's ministry.  Karen, on the other hand, was passionate, somewhat abrasive, and confrontational.

Some of us with a more diplomatic bent were called in to assist Karen in the necessity of communicating more gently to the leaders. We did and she started a hugely successful ministry to her people! It was wonderful. She did what no paid staff could have done. It was marvelous to behold! CHPC took a risk with Karen and she made them look like a group of geniuses.

Jerry Kirk took a big risk with me. He led a doubtful group of Elders to hire me, a bearded, charismatic Baptist to join the staff.  Jerry was a genius at gathering strong horses around him and he turned us loose in a Presbyterian church of people used to always doing things "Decently and in order", Jerry thought outside the box. The staff of ten Ministers followed Jerry's model and discovered diamonds in the rough to be innovators and gadflies that impacted the region and the USA.

Are there some diamonds in the rough in your church that are passionate about serving? Can you help them focus and act on what God is calling them to do? Will you take a risk with God and let go of the desire to control everything?

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