Monday, June 7, 2010

Day 38: Lesson 3 of 3 in Church Politics


In the last part of this series I want to take a moment to blog about ministry jealousy. This concept may be strange to some but unfortunately it is alive in some churches. In the book "The 48 Laws of Power" author Robert Greene suggests "Never Outshine The Master." In a perfect world we would like to believe if a ministry grows in a church that becomes a "spotlight ministry" the senior pastor would be excited. This is not always the case.

What happens in some churches where the senior pastor is insecure is the worship leader, youth pastor, etc. will have a ministry they are extremely passionate about and it grows. For a music ministry...more and more people will want to be on the team and soon artists are attracting artists. What happens is people come into the church and say hi and hang out more with the worship leader than they do the pastor. If you are a youth pastor...be careful! It is no secret that you can grow a youth ministry rapidly in any city. While in Waupaca as a youth pastor our youth group started with 5 kids in a new church plant. Within 6 months the youth group was up to 25 kids coming to youth group and 80+ coming to our outreaches. While I was in Milwaukee the church was running just over 100 people and the youth group in its hay-day was up to 80. This does not always bode well with the pastor. I am glad to say that while youth pastoring in Waupaca I had TOTAL freedom and support to go after it. In Milwaukee...things did not go so well after we bought a new building. We had to switch to a night that did not work well for the teens and within weeks the youth group dropped to 12-20 kids on any given week.

Now that I am a lead pastor I have a worship pastor on staff that knocks it out of the park. Anytime you have another leader in the church...as a pastor you must be confident in them and yourself. They will support you and you support them. We have a great youth director at our church as well and you know what? Yes...teens will come to them first and youth sponsors because that is who they do ministry with the most. A lead pastor must be okay with this! I recall starting a college group because those getting to be older in our youth group did not want to leave...I can't blame them...we had allot of fun and many of them are still in ministry. But the powers that be felt we were starting our own church and had some very strict constraints put on it. It is my assumption that any progressive thinking pastor would look at a rapidly growing college ministry and say..."WOW, what can we do to facilitate more growth and if it should be...let's start another church!"

Sadly, rule #1 in "The 48 Laws of Power" can sometimes be true. Don't let it derail you though...you stay true to who you are and see your ministry grow because God has blessed you with what it takes to see it go. If you are in a spotlight ministry...encourage your pastor and keep encouraging people you are leading to look at the church as a whole body.

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