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The spot for the good news, the good word, the quick reports of the many, many wonderful news items I hear all the time and want to share with the rest of you. Expect to find the good news when you come to check out "what’s the good word?"

Thursday, January 27, 2011


“Please come and help us, you’re the expert.”

I hear this a lot. I like to be invited to “come help” and I don’t mind needing (on some topics) to be the “expert.” I have lived a long time and I do have quite a lot of experience and I’ve built up some expertise in some areas. Believe me, there are plenty of areas where I’m no expert and I know what it means to need to call on someone else for the expertise I clearly lack.

But here’s my dilemma. Many of the things I’m “expert” at don’t need to be my exclusive domain. I’d much, much rather be AN expert, rather than THE expert, if you know what I mean. CEM is a broad area with many communities, many people and many more people we could reach or touch if we just had a few more experts.

In fact, you don’t even need to be an expert. If you’d be willing to build your own knowledge about some of the things I know, I’d just be ever so pleased to help you along. I’d surely love to hear of people who would like to learn from me. I’m always on the lookout for folks who don’t yet feel entirely competent or experienced, but would like to learn how to teach a class or facilitate a workshop or recommend a trusted resource or review a promising book. Those are some of the areas I get called on. How I would love someone to co-teach, to take notes, to debrief, to compare opinions. In other words, to build up their own expertise.

We need lots of experts if we’re going to succeed with the goals set before us (2020 Vision). But none of us began as an expert. We all started out just being interested in something, or suspecting we might find a passion if given half a chance. If you’d really like to develop some experience, here’s what I suggest:

Look around for someone you consider an expert. Get to know them better. Tell them, straight out, that you’d like to build some knowledge or skill in the thing you see them doing. Ask if you can spend some time with them. Ask them to recommend something you could read. Suggest you chat about it later. Invite yourself to tag along the next time they’re …fill in the right word…teaching, preaching, listening to a speaker, going to a movie, preparing a budget, searching out a new text book, visiting in the hospital, cooking for a crowd, setting up a sound system, designing a web page. There are just myriads of things where we have experts and where we’ll be needing lots more skill/wisdom/expertise as we say good bye to our retirees and move with confidence into the decade before us.

What do you think? Is there an expert near you that you’d like to nominate as your teacher/mentor?

Posted by Marion


  1. I recently have spent some quality time with Evan. Bill McCarty. I think I could listen to that man read from the phone book. I would love to be able to captivate an individual or congregation as he does. I wonder if that is even something one can teach?

  2. Thanks Steve,
    I saw this earlier and thought it was a duplicate. Of course, now I see it WAS a duplicate, but intended to be one.
    And Yes, I think it IS something you can teach, or at least something you can learn. Spending time, thinking about, examining what works and why are all good ways to do that.
    Especially if you have some initial talent in the first place--and you do!

  3. I am looking forward to hearing comments on this topic. I'm on a pastoral team in Kirtland Ohio and am needing lots of help on all of these Questions!!!!! Just feel like we are existing day to day. Thanks Cathy

  4. I found your Friday note Cathy and replied to you there. Welcome aboard.


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