Any leader worth his/her salt will tell you that who is around them makes all the difference. The team you build, the leaders who work alongside of you will make or break you.
For many pastors, being a pastor is incredibly lonely. They carry a weight few people understand. Much of the loneliness comes from the reality of the job, but it also comes from them not being willing to build a team. But the success of every leader, every church, every organization will rise and fall on the leaders around that leader.
I was reminded of this last night.
As an elder team, we recently updated my job description to deal with the growth we’ve experienced, as well as to set some realistic goals and objectives. Last night, we spent some time reviewing and how it was going, as well as reflecting on the last 16 months as a church. Talking through our goals, where we are with them, how the progress is going, our dreams, our joys as a team, leaders and a church, as well as our disappointments.
A lot of laughter and some moments that made us all pause as we thought on God’s goodness and protection, but also the heartache that comes with leading and shepherding people. It was one of those holy moments as a leader that makes you think, “I love what I do and who I get to do it with.” Very few pastors can say this.
I think for a couple of reasons. As leaders, we are control freaks. We always want to have the power and control. The idea of giving some of that away to highly capable people is scary. The idea of opening up and being vulnerable flies in the face of what many leaders feel. Yet, without doing these two things, you will never reach your full potential as a leader or as a church.
All of the men you see above have bought into, not only me as a leader, but to the vision of Revolution. Getting a church off the ground is an incredibly difficult path. The journey we have been on has had unbelievable highs and incredible lows. We have sacrificed time, money, energy to make it happen. We have lost friends along the way who no longer wanted to be on the journey, which is by far the most difficult aspect of leadership and church planting. But, one of the things that pushes us is that we are doing it together.
One of our values at Revolution is community. Now I know that every church says this is a value. Here is how you know if it is a value, does the rest of the church (not just the leaders) show that it is a value. Values trickle down from the top. The law of the lid says no one goes higher than the leaders. At our elder meetings, we start off by answering 3 questions: What is God teaching me right now? How did I do at serving my family in the last month? How can we pray for you and your family? This has created a vulnerability and openness that is difficult to get to when you bring a group of guys together.
Here is the point, if you are a leader, you can’t do it alone. Anything worthwhile will take more than you to get done. Find some other people to help pull the rope in the same direction. Is it a risk? Yes. Is it hard to build a team that lasts? Yes. Is it worth it? Yes.
Who you put around you matters.