Don’t Ever Ask Me to Sing a Special. Cause if you do, it’ll be awkward for everyone involved. Singing is not really my thing, as much as I love praising God. He’s gracious to listen to me; others – not so much.
For that matter, administration isn’t my strength either. I cower at the thought of telling someone what to do. My calendar and I don’t get along, though I try my hardest to make it work for me. Dates and times always get turned around. Me scheduling volunteers for children’s church is a nightmare. Organization fails me, every time. When I distribute lesson plans to teachers, they get double copies of the wrong week, for a different age group. It’s not good.
I organized every aspect of our Children’s Church program for almost two years. Two years of wrong dates, wrong lessons, wrong volunteers. I tried my best, and it wasn’t all a complete disaster, but it certainly left something to be desired. To add to the repeated mistakes, I developed a passionate disdain for all of this scheduling. I would much rather do anything else than schedule teachers and assistants for our programs.
It hit me one day in prayer that I was working outside of my gifts. No, administration is not my gift in the least. But I can teach and I can encourage. In fact, teaching kids about Jesus makes me come alive. I love it, love it, love it. And encouraging? Well, I love that too. Those “troubled children” are my favorite. I love speaking the truth of the Word into their lives and seeing what God does with that. He is incredible.
The day I finally handed over the administrative tasks was one of the most freeing moments of my life. I have never felt such a burden being lifted. The girl who schedules volunteers and distributes curriculum now is incredible. She is the most organized woman (and a mom of 5 boys to boot – maybe you have to be organized if you’re mom to 5?) To top it all off, she gets excited about it this task! This is her gift and she is using it to glorify God. I am so thankful for her service. Now I am free to serve God more in line with the way He has created me!
So my questions for you are: Are you working in your gifting? Are there some tasks that you can delegate to other members of your team? How can you utilize every gift on your staff so that God is glorified and we are fulfilling the challenge of 1 Corinthians 12: 27-28? Here are some suggestions to help you sort through responsibilities and create a more effective Children’s Church team:
Know Your Strengths: What passions do you have? What gifts has God given you? What makes you “come alive?” Is it teaching? Preaching? Serving God behind the scenes? Worship? Listening? The gift of mercy? Identify these particular gifts and work on developing them for God’s glory.
Know Your Weaknesses: What about your job responsibilities makes you anxious? What takes three times as long as it should? Is there anything, in particular, that you always mess up? (Now keep in mind that God does work through us despite our weaknesses, in accordance with 2 Corinthians 12:9.) But it is important that you work alongside the gifting He has given you.
Know Your Team: Think about your Children’s Church teachers, volunteers, staff, or other individuals in the congregation, whose gifts you have noticed. Ask questions, observe them in action, and pray for wisdom and direction from God, to help you designate roles and responsibilities. Then work up the courage to ask. Though a task may be out of their comfort zone initially, they may stumble upon a God-given gift they never knew they had!
Know Your God: As always, seek God first over every decision you make that affects the children in your ministry. Trust that God will meet all your needs, according to his glorious riches in Christ Jesus (Philippians 4:19) And remember that He allocates gifts so that we don’t bear the weight of the church on ourselves. We are not superhuman.
So today’s challenge is to work alongside other Christ-followers, each utilizing our own gifts, for the sake of the children in our ministries and for God’s glory. Now that – that would be something worth singing about. Just not in the form of a special (at least for this off-keyed follower).
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