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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?"

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Church Leaders are People who Love People

I am discovering that leadership in a church is vastly different than with the corporate world which by comparison is very simple. I recently read an e-book called Body Politics. The title reflects politics within the Body of Christ. This is not in reference to the church participating as a body to influence political parties or process in society, (which plays out in our mission initiatives) it is about politics in the person to person relationships, functions and policies within the daily lives of our membership. I am finding as stated in the book that these political complexities are far more prevalent than in the corporate world.

In business, typically, you can go home to escape it. Your life is separate from the office. By far, the majority of your friendships and certainly your family are distinct from the work environment. Not so in the lives of church leadership. There is almost no escape from the prevalence and pervasiveness of life within the "Body". We function as ministers of presence to the entire mission field, striving to be prayerfully mindful of the thousands of names, each a valued life, the dozens of congregations, the vast spectrum of diverse viewpoints that comprise the mission or world Church areas. In addition we are referees of divisive matters that arise from facility issues to debated risk management applications, to congregational disputes, to membership values, to personal morals and lifestyles. Did I mention we function as any business with incoming revenue, banking, outgoing expenses, employee management, audits and  taxation, marketing, program administration, facilitation of extensive training of members and an array of communications.

Somewhere in this mix, ministry is seen by all as the leadership priority, for this is the necessary visible and felt dimension of "Church Leadership" presence that nurtures other leaders, that is the catalyst for vision and motivation throughout the broad field of geographical responsibility.

Always in every organization, there is some degree of dissatisfaction with the corporate administration. Because religion is so emotionally close to the heart of each of us, is linked to our personal identities, our interpretation of life's purposes, our social values, daily choices in financial expenditures, inclusiveness, theology of marriage, generosity and the interpretation of myriad life circumstances...... the pressures of membership expectations to bring perfect wisdom to each challenge large and small brought before us, is daunting.

In a recent discussion forum amongst Canadian leaders it was stated that the Mission personnel exist to reduce and relieve the day to day administration functions for our laity leadership and can't be expected to also be ministers of presence. This is a quandary for me and all of us. The more I interact with our people everyday, one by one, the more my heart yearns to be a catalyst, a source of blessing where needs and opportunities exist.

Perhaps today's blog is more than you might want to hear and view inside the internal workings of the Mission Centre or World Church. For each of us, this is not a job. This is a ministry. I personally do not like the title of Financial Officer..... I minister. You are on my heart and mind. As we pray for you, as we administer and minister, I ask for your prayers for us that we may be blessed with extraordinary wisdom, with insightful empathy, with envisioned hope that does not get mired in the negatives, with heart-warming joy in your successes, and abiding awareness of grace in our lives. Most especially please pray for our families who bear the burdens of the Body politics. Thank you for your graciousness in our lives.
Submitted by Kerry

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