Friday, April 27, 2007

It's all beginning to make sense (part II)

So, back to this "working idea" that could change in six months, about "It." What is present when "It" is present in your church? Craig gave us a list of seven "working theories," along with seven questions that he suggests are present when "It" is present in your church.

  • Vision Alignment - Always make sure that you have a strong, clearly communicable vision that people can jump on board with. Without a vision, people cast off restraint (Proverbs 29:11)
  • Question: Do you have a God given vision? Is your team in alignment with the vision?

  • Divine Focus - What do you do as a church? You can't successfully or effectively be a full-service church and so you must figure out what you do best and what you are passionate about, and focus on those things. If you are doing too much, you need a strategy for a "planned abandonment" of some of the things you are doing.
  • Question: What are the things we are doing that we need to stop doing? (We don't need to be adding stuff to our To-do-list but to our To-don't- list).

  • Unmistakable Cameraderie - On teams that have "It," there is a divine flow. People genuinely like each other and enjoy working together. There are nicknames, practical jokes, and a ton of fun. This really enhances an atmosphere of creativity.
  • Question: What would make your ministry more fun?

  • A very high pain tolerance - When you have "It," and others don't, they will find every excuse in the book to attribute your success to something negative (you're compromising the message, your'e too seeker sensitive, you're drawing people in with smoke and mirrors, and the list goes on). Generally speaking, the main difference between the larger church pastor and the smaller church pastor is not the fact that the larger church pastor is a better preacher (this is often not the case), but simply the fact that the larger church pastor is willing, and has chosen to endure more pain. You have to be willing to make some tough decisions, endure criticism gracefully, smile when you are hurting, and learn to play hurt.
  • Question: What painful decision are you avoiding?

  • You have a willingness to fail - Failure is not an option. It is an absolute neccessity! (I personally really love this big idea because I have experienced it first hand). Peter could not have preached the rousing and passionate sermon he did in Acts 2, if he hadn't experienced the failure of rejecting Jesus and then being so absolutely forgiven. Until you have failed and know what it's like to be loved by God even through your failure, there are some things in you that you may never really accomplish.
  • Question: What has God called you to do that you are afraid to try?

  • You have a Kingdom mindset - You must be willing to share what you have since it really isn't yours anyway. Your success is not primarily a result of your skills and your labor, but is the will and purpose of God being played out in your life. You can and must still make it about Jesus no matter how successful you may become. It doesn't have to be When you have "It" you give "It" away.
  • Question: What do you have that you can give away to others?

  • You have "It." - For your ministry to have "It," you have "It." It keeps you up at night, it makes you mad at the devil. It begins from the passion that burns inside of you. Remember though, that the fact that you have "It" doesn't mean that you can't lose "It."The innate danger for many of us who serve as "full-time" pastors, is that we can become "part-time" followers of Christ in the midst of our busy, important lives. What caused us to have "It" in the first place was what was burning on the inside of us and became manifest on the outside. If we stop concentrating on the inside and begin to focus on the outside, we are likely to lose "It."
  • Question: Do you have "It"? If not, what are you going to do to get "It"?

Craig concluded this mind blowing "working theory" with an excerpt of a prayer by Sir Francis Drake attributed to him in the 1500's, and it goes like this:

Disturb us Lord, when we are too well pleased with ourselves. When our dreams have come true because we have dreamed too little. When we have arrived safely because we have sailed too close to the shore.


The Clarks said...

Not to be mistaken for the commonplace... "It" has been around far longer than Ebay's marketing campaign. "It" has changed nations. We talk about men who had or have "It" everyday. But I can't be them. I have to be me... and still try to get "It." How do you go after something you can't exactly define?

Claudia said...

IT is i read this message again...after watching the video with my favorite team in the world (i love you all guys), i am just grateful that we can say we have IT...when you align your heart beat to the FATHERS heart beat then you have IT...and everything changes, your priorities, your definition of succes, the way you pray, the way you fast...lets prepare for what GOD has in store for us...lets guar IT and share IT with the world.
Its not about us...its about JESUS.
Praise GOD