I recently spent $75 on a service call because my washing machine was making all kinds of racket. It filled up with water, swirled my clothes around, then drained the water and spun the clothes to wring out the water. The problem was that during the spinning cycle, my washing machine would move all around the laundry room! Imbalance had created a situation that wasn’t good for my washing machine, my clothes, or my nerves. When the technician realigned the drum and set things back in order, I had no more problems. Imbalance created a bad problem for me.
Balancing your teaching ministry as a group leader
If you are a group leader, be sure that you are dividing your time between three essential tasks. Keeping these in balance is key to a successful ministry:
- Reaching – this is the part of the job in which you intentionally keep your group’s attention focused outwardly on the community. Your goal is to reach those “not yet here.” My friend David Francis used to say, “The natural inertia of any group is to turn inward.” He’s right on. It takes a real leader to keep people’s hearts and minds on the unconnected people who live in your community.
- Teaching – Most group leader excel at this one. We often excel so good, that we create an imbalance because we don’t spend enough time and energy on the other two! Many groups have effective teaching, but they are not reaching people nor are they ministering to people – but boy, do they have some good Bible-thumping lessons!
- Ministering – This can be the “make or break” factor. Meeting people’s needs is important. Each person in your group has physical, emotional, and spiritual needs. Sadly, some needs go unmet, and people get discouraged and leave the church.
Balancing your church’s student and kids’ ministries as staff leader
You may be responsible for leading an entire segment of a ministry. Your church might have called you to minister to students, kids, or preschoolers. You, too, must have a balanced approach to ministry. Think about dividing your time, budget, and overall ministry into three equal and important parts:
- The people – If you are a student minister, 1/3 of your time should be spent with the people you are assigned to reach. If you are called to reach kids and/or preschoolers, the same applies to you.
- The parents – Many ministries forget about the parents of students and kids, but they are vital. 1/3 of your time should be invested in creating a healthy ministry to the parents of the people you are commissioned to reach. Retreats, seminars, guests with expertise in family issues, and discipleship classes can all be a part of a strategy to reach and minister to parents.
- The group leaders – Without this special group of people, your ministry is dead in the water. Be sure to budget time and money to meet the needs of this group. Train them. Appreciate them. Spend time with them.
It’s easy to get imbalanced, and it does require some effort to re-balance things if they are out of whack. But the dividends are worth it, so look at your group, or at your overall groups ministry, and decide how you will restore balance if things have gotten lopsided.
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