How to Keep People from Serving

I was talking to a friend the other day and he was asking me a question all pastors wrestle with. And that is, what to do and what to give away to other staff or volunteer leaders.

He was sharing how he showed up to help with the set up and tear down for his church because they are portable.

While my friend wasn’t saying this, what this stems from for many pastors is a desire to not seem lazy (after all, we get paid for this), for some it is because they don’t trust people and are afraid to give something away (not the case with my friend). He looked at me and said, “You don’t think I should do that do you?”

My answer was simple. No. Not because it isn’t worth his time. Sadly, that is the criteria many pastors use for deciding what to do. But my reason was simple. By doing that, he was actually keeping someone else from serving. Because the set up team doesn’t need another person because he is there every week. Many times, out of a sense of duty, not wanting to seem lazy or whatever reason we have, we actually keep people from serving.

So, what do you do on a weekly basis that you should stop doing? What are you doing that someone else can do? Every pastor or leader does things that someone else can do? But, we also do things we can’t pass off to someone. Those are the things we need to pour time and energy into.

Everytime I give something away at Revolution, it is nerve wracking because I am putting trust into someone else. It also takes work because I have to spend time with that person passing it off, bringing them up to speed. Although, truth be told, the reason leaders take so long to pass something off has more to do with the leader and less to do with the capability of the person we are passing that thing off to.

For me, the idea of keeping someone from doing something has actually changed the way I view giving things away and developing other leaders.