Tag Archive - career

0

How do you know when it’s time to Leave your Church?

Most people don’t stay at one place of employment their entire lives. If you work at a church, chances are you probably won’t work at that church the rest of your life. Most likely at some point you’re going to leave to go and start or work at another church.

There are all kinds of reasons why church staff leave the church they work at to go work another church. Some of those reasons are solid and make a lot of sense. Some of them as you could guess, not so much.

If you’re a church staff member and you’re trying to figure out if you should stay or if it’s time to go, here are a couple of principles you should keep in mind.

God’s Direction

I’ve said this many times before both in writing blog posts on staffing and personally 1-on-1 to church staff members. If you know God is calling you to something else, then that’s a great reason to leave a church. But you better be pretty sure that it was God you heard talking and not the pizza you had at 2:00am before you start waving around the, “it’s God will,” card.

You’re Asked to Leave

If you’re asked to leave your church staff job for whatever reason from downsizing, restructuring, poor fit, or poor performance you can be pretty sure that’s a good reason to leave a church.

Ongoing Conflict

It’s difficult to give your all to a church and be “all-in” when you don’t get along with the people you work with. Just because it’s a church doesn’t mean every personality will be able to work with every other personality. I’ve seen some staff stay too long at a church in an effort to “live at peace with all men,” thinking they’re ungodly if they can’t figure out how to work with everyone. It’s probably naïve to think you’ll be able to get along with everyone or work for anyone. It’s important to remember that relational and cultural chemistry matters.

Opportunity

Sometimes I’ve seen staff leave their current church because they’ve grown and they’re ready for a new challenge or greater responsibility, but their current church is unable to provide that challenge or opportunity.

Don’t Respect the Leadership

If you don’t respect the leader you’re serving under and you can’t, in good conscience, submit to their authority then it’s time to leave.

Don’t Agree with the Vision

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve had this conversation. Someone (usually in a 2nd, 3rd, or 4th chair role) thinks that God has called them to speak for the Lord and help their poor Lead Pastor understand that it is time for the vision to change because they don’t agree with it. And they are just the person who has come down off of the mountain with the new blueprint for where the church should go next. Or on the other hand the vision is so unclear that people have a hard time understanding how to define success in their job, which leads to frustration, which leads to burnout. Either route you take you end up with a lot of frustration and an eventual job change.

The first two reasons (God’s direction and you’re asked to leave) are super clear and no brainer indicators that’s it’s time to go. The other four are not as easy to figure out. They can be indicators that it’s time to go or they can be excuses that you make to yourself that it’s time to go. You have to discern which it is.


Posted in Leadership, Staffing

0

A Large Multisite Church in Phoenix is Hiring a Small Group Pastor

I’m pleased to announce a new Staff Search. Sun Valley Community Church, the church I have the honor of serving at, is beginning a national search for a Small Group Pastor to serve on our Tempe Campus. Sun Valley began as a church plant in 1990 in Chandler, Arizona. Over the years Sun Valley has grown into a large mult-site church in the Phoenix area. Currently there are four campuses located in Casa Grande, East Mesa, Gilbert, and Tempe and with a fifth campus opening in the fall of 2016 in Queen Creek. Together nearly 7,000 people attend a Sun Valley Campus each weekend. The Tempe campus was the result of a merger in the Fall of 2011 with Bethany Community Church. In the merger, Sun Valley acquired a 16-acre, 8-building campus with over 100,000 sq. ft. under roof. At present, the campus attendance averages more than 1,200 people a week, but when fully utilized, the campus capacity will accommodate more than 6,000 people. Sun Valley has been featured in a book by Leadership Network about church mergers: Better Together: Making Church Mergers Work, and has been named by Outreach Magazine as one of the 100 fastest growing churches in the nation. To learn more about that story click here Part-1 and Part-2.

Interested in learning more? Continue reading below: Continue Reading…


Posted in Leadership, Spiritual Formation, Staffing

3

How do You Know if You’re Called to Ministry?

Working with young leaders, one of the most common questions I find myself fielding is, “How do I know if I’m called to ministry?” And while there are some good biblical verses we could point to or theological answers that could be given I’d like to get very practical with you for a moment. If you take the time to ask, and listen, to the stories of people who have been called into full time Christian Ministry you’re likely to hear some very similar responses that generally include the following four components.

#1 Deep Sense of Burden or Passion

A calling to ministry typically begins with a deep sense of burden or passion. It’s this idea that something is wrong, someone needs to do something about it, and maybe that someone is me. I can remember my own calling to ministry beginning this way as a young teenager. I felt a deep sense of responsibility and burden for the spiritual wellbeing of my friends (even though my lifestyle was ironically in no condition to do much about it). I can remember praying at night before sleep, in tears begging God to use me to influence thousands of people for Him. I also felt compelled through those prayer times that God didn’t just want my “heart”, or even my career, but my life.

#2 Ministry Experimentation

The typical next step that a calling to ministry takes is actually experimenting with ministry through volunteering and discovering your gifting and place in the Body of Christ. I was 17 years old and scared to death when my Pastor asked me to lead a Jr. High Sunday School Class. What would I teach, would they listen to me, could I do it, could I keep those unruly Jr. Highers under control?

#3 Affirmation by the Church

Who knew that Jr. High Sunday School Class would actually go well? I know, shocking right? But it did go well and people began to believe in me, and that God could use me. And I began to believe it too. Other leaders in the Church, particularly my Pastor recognized and affirmed God’s call to ministry in my life.

#4 Preparation and Training

The final component that you’ll regularly hear from those who have been called to ministry is that they experience a period of training and development that prepares them for full time Christian work. For me this would mean going to college (that is after a short 2 year stop at Jr. College to get my grades up and my Associates Degree…I thought I had better things to do in High School than go to High School) getting a Christian education, formal biblical training, mentoring and internships.

Even though I didn’t list them here I’m interested in some verses or biblical suggestions that you’d recommend young leaders consider when trying discover if they’re called to ministry? I’d love your input so leave a comment!


Posted in Leadership, Spiritual Formation