Working with people is very rewarding but difficult at the same time. Dealing with different personalities, backgrounds and methods can be tiresome. In a business where individuals coming to Christ and being disciples are the bottom line, it requires the XP to be able to function as business manager and be relationship oriented.
God has created everyone to wear two hats: work and relationship. Adam was able to work the garden and have a relationship with God and Eve. Balance in these two areas are key to a successful leader in a church. An XP can’t be all business and no relationship or all relationship and no work. While some may focus more on one than the other, there still must be a proper balance between business and people. A leader cannot be successful without balance because all that we do is meant to benefit our congregants.
Someone once told me that if someone fails at people, they fail at life. The more I thought about this theory, the more it rang true to me and began effecting the way that I lived. Life is all about relationships. As we grow up, we relate to our family and friends; as adults we have to relate to people on our jobs. It is through successfully navigating relationships that we get connected to the right people who help us reach our goals in life. Some of the people who have helped us the most did so because we had a relationship with them.
This same principle holds true in the church. While most XPs don’t do a lot of direct ministry, we can’t forget about the people. The minister’s role is to teach, encourage and serve the members of the congregation. Sometimes one of the best things to do is to walk amongst them, offering a smile and words of encouragement where needed. One of my favorite times at church is the transition between worship services! Bishop Evans is walking, talking and making sure he says hello to as many people as possible. While he is doing that, I do the same. Some of my greatest volunteers have come from a small five minute conversation I had with them between services. It didn’t take a long time—just a few minutes—to find out what they were good at and then to encourage them to put their skills to work for the Lord.
We must continue to remember that the bottom line is not money or programs but people. Everything we do must be for the benefit of our members and for those who will come to Christ through our church.