Archive for September 24th, 2008

I have the privilege of working in Corporate America and I have had the displeasure of working with people like the woman in the picture above. If you don’t understand it is simply micro-managing.  Micro-managing is a direct result of a lack of trust.

This is my fifth installment of this series and I realized about a week ago that it would take me much longer to complete this so I will have the honor of teaching this in my local fellowship (the first time I have ever taught at this capacity at my current assembly) this weekend. The fourth letter in Leadership is the letter “D”. To make the acrostic work Calvin used the word delegate, I want to say this word is synonymous with “entrusting” which we should be doing. Lets look at an history changing delegation or entrusting:

All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. 19 Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”

We all know the story, we all know this verse, but I want to pull out the entrusting element of this. Jesus says “all authority has been given to me” and in turn He says “and I am entrusting this authority to you”. Plain in simple this was the task they were faced with. To take the Gospel to the world. The most important event in human history had taken place and God (Jesus is still God right?) entrusts 11 men to make sure the message reached everyone (remember He only appeared to a few of them). God entrusts them with a priceless diamond for the entire world to see. They in turn entrust each of us as priest of God to continue to spread this message to the whole world and to make disciples of the whole world.

However, something happened early in the history of the Church. So men got a wild hair and said “no, no, we can’t entrust the Church in the hands of laymen, we must make a separate caste, and this special group of men will ensure that this priceless gem is handled properly”. So they reversed the charge. All disciples are to do all ministry and now only special men in a special position, with a special education (no pun intended), from a special school are qualified to handle this gem.  I guess Jesus’ didn’t know what He was doing.

You see as leaders if we can’t entrust ministry into the hands of the ministers, we then circumvent the all priest ministry handed down by God Himself. The purpose of the gifts listed in Ephesians 4:11 is for this purpose:

12 to equip the saints for the work of ministry, for building up the body of Christ, 13 until we all attain to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to mature manhood, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ, 14 so that we may no longer be children, tossed to and fro by the waves and carried about by every wind of doctrine, by human cunning, by craftiness in deceitful schemes. 15 Rather, speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in every way into him who is the head, into Christ, 16 from whom the whole body, joined and held together by every joint with which it is equipped, when each part is working properly, makes the body grow so that it builds itself up in love.

Now I asked a question a few weeks back and it was this “Is the Minister Full of the Church or is the Church full of Ministers”. This question now becomes relevant in this small exhortation. Only one man possessed all of the gifts and He was the God Man Jesus the Christ. Going forward the scriptures says “To each is given the manifestation of the Spirit for the common good.”  God in His great Wisdom and Providence, decided to scatter the gifts that were exhaustive in Jesus throughout the entire Church in order for us to depend on one another for the building up of the “whole church” as we “grow up into the head” who is Christ.

Okay here comes the practicalness of this conversation. Today, leaders tend to Lord it over the Church of Christ. They control which programs are started, they control what type of bible studies and lessons can be taught, they control what kind of outreach can be done in the name of the church, they control who teaches (namely by only allowing themselves to teach), they even control small groups and other things done in the name of the church. I am not saying you shouldn’t visit or be involved but I am saying that the approval must come through the leaders and if they don’t like it they shut it down. I ask what type of entrusting is that. It is funny that Jesus gave total freedom in how they were to minister. His command was to “go and to teach” and “to make disciples”. They had some leeway (and we see a 100% dependency on the Spirit) to how this was to be flushed out.

Leaders guide as Alan always says. There is a lovely post he has on Decision Making and Leadership also. As leaders we are to lead by example, maturity and service, not by holding tightly to the ministry as if we own veto power. Entrusting takes courage and if we are doing what Paul charges in Ephesians 4:11 I think we could do this more easily and with greater peace of mind. I think our lack of entrusting speaks volumes of us as leaders. I would change the motto to a bit and say “Let Go and Let Them” the “them” being those who are not considered leaders. Thanks for reading if you made it this far.


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