I want to continue poking around the dense underbrush of time-management in Christian ministry. Who knows what I might startle and flush out into the light?
If you’ve been involved in Christian circles for any length of time, I imagine you’ve heard people say ‘Good ministry always generates more ministry’ — or words to that effect.
I’ve definitely heard it. I’ve even said it myself.
But I’d us to scrutinise it. Because, as I noted in my previous post about working out our limits not by policing the boundaries but by focusing on the centre and making sure all the big and important things are locked in, the fact that ministry is open-ended makes it even more difficult to say No.
Perhaps it’s just because I wrestle with perfectionism, but there always seems to be another person to follow up, another person needing help, another task (or six) to do to wrap up the day.
And so the idea that good ministry always generates more ministry can console me and help me draw a line that says ‘Enough’.
On the other hand, it can also let me off the hook. In particular, if my strategy is bad — or if I’m not on top of my admin (as I would be expected to be in any other job) — then the ‘good ministry…’ mantra becomes self-serving.
Let me explain:
There may be too many people to follow up and push along the road to maturity because I’m being effective — ie. the ministry is multiplying as those I’m working with are involved in making disciples themselves. Or there may be too many people to follow up because I’m failing to do my job and aren’t touching base with newcomers, helping them connect in with others, or grab hold of Jesus.
Which is it for you?