It is time for Christian leaders to collectively agree to drop two words from our vocabulary – the “B” word and the “S” words. These two words are utterly offensive and they ought to never be uttered from the lips of those who follow Christ. The words are “busy” and “success.”
“Busy” has far too long become an excuse or a cover for something else. A few years ago I was following a devotional guide on the Holy Spirit and as I was reflecting on the delicate art of simplicity. I suddenly realized that I had simply become too busy and that I used my own busyness to make myself feel important. I had deceived myself into thinking that important people are busy people, therefore I need to be busy. So if some asked me how I was doing, I would say, “Busy!” So I determined during that devotional time that I would remove “busy” from my vocabulary. I do slip up from time to time, but I am pressing on towards a “B” word free life.
“Busy” is a bad word. It is a dirty word. Church leaders who make themselves busy are either covering up for a lack of self confidence or they are practicing bad leadership. Christian leaders who live the “B” word often practice poor leadership, because they are trying to do everything themselves. Effective Christian leaders learn to use the “D” word – delegation. To delegate is who we move the church forward. Delegation causes new leaders to rise to the surface. It is not only necessary to accomplish today’s tasks, but it also prepares for the future. It fulfills both management needs (present tasks) and leadership needs (visionary future.)
“Success” is a down-right rotten word. There is no success in church life. The work of the ministry never ends. If we reach a level of “success” in the church, we then have the pressure of maintaining that level of success. Beyond that, new people, new generations will follow these people and this generation. So we never arrive; we never attain. We must constantly be preparing for the future by raising up new leaders and passing our values on to the NEXT generation. We should drop the word “success” from our vocabulary. It reeks with American capitalism and materialistic values. The word “success” when used in the local church is so tied to numbers – bodies (the number of people in worship attendance), bucks (the number of dollars in the church bank accounts), & buildings (the number buildings on the church property).
“Success” is an ugly word. Christian leaders need to discard the “S” and adopt the “F” word – fruitfulness. The Bible speaks of fruitfulness. A tree is fruitful. It produces fruit and it produces seeds, for a new generation of fruitfulness. This is the way forward…fruitfulness not success. Jesus said, “May you bear fruit and may your fruit remain.” Success can be measured in numbers. Fruitfulness is measured through relationship in terms of transformation and character.
I want to be a “D” leader and a “F” leader…a delegator and a fruitful leader!