Since the election, I’ve been surprised by the number of pastors or church leaders who have put their ministries “on hold” or considered rethinking their opportunities for 2013. While I’m not hear to make any sort of political statement or argue whether or not their fears are just justifiable, I do think it’s an important reminder for the way we lead our churches and ministries.
Each one of us is given the same two options when we’re faced with uncertain times: fear or trust. The first paralyzes us and keeps us from moving forward. The second enables us to push through and accomplish great things.
Although the first comes more naturally and might seem to be the best decision at the time, I was reminded the other day why we should always strive to choose the later after reading this post from Ron Edmondson. Everyone faces uncertainty in our ministry at some point in time. But, like most things in life, it’s how we respond to our circumstances that determine the legacy of our leadership.
Even though they’re uncomfortable or scary, “uncertain times” can often be beneficial because they force us to:
- Rely more on God and less on ourselves.
- Come together to work through unanswered questions
- Work harder
- Become more efficient
- Gain perspective and wisdom
Whatever uncertainty your church might be facing, there are two primary pieces of advice I would give you:
- Don't hit the pause button.
The worst thing you could do is “nothing” when there may be an opportunity to serve new people God is leading your way.
- Steward Well.
Uncertain times cause us to either maintain the level of our ministry with less resources or act without guaranteed results. Whatever the cause, be sure you have systems in place to steward people well.
As a leader, there will always be times when you have to lead through uncertainty. My hope is that when you’re faced with those times, you won’t be controlled by fear (with either action or inaction), but that you would trust in God and embrace everything you’re about to learn along the way.
What are some things you would have missed out on if you would have reacted with fear during uncertain times? What other advice would you give to someone who’s currently facing uncertainty?