One of the dangers in any work is “over management”. So often, there are attempts at controlling work, maximising revenues and increasing efficiencies, that we draw things closer and manage things tightly. This may inhibit creativity, work flow and the general excitement of team growth, more importantly, it may strangle faith.
In ministry “over management” can be stifling. We see in the Old Testament that the people of Israel, when arriving at the borders of the promised land, were warned to remember their God, the God who sustains, the God who provides, the God who is faithful. However, as they settled in the land, they forgot their God, relied on the land to sustain them and thereby forfeited those things that had been so longed for. Why was this?
The land was given as a gift, not as a possession. The land was owned by the creator and therefore the people needed to manage the land in a way that recognised ownership – instead they “over managed” the land as if it was their personal possession. It came to a point where they lost the land and were driven into exile.
What does this mean for ministry? It causes us to stop and remember that our ministry does not belong to us – it belongs to God. Remember who the rightful owner is – manage it appropriately, to enhance and not possess. Honour the owner of the work – remember faith is integral to all that we do. This is a challenge but it enables us to honour the Creator God – management is important but not to the point were we stifle those good things that need space to grow.
Easier said than done…..but I will keep trying!