Last week I spent an evening with a Pastor Search Committee who is looking for a senior pastor after 40+ years of having the same senior pastor serve them. My first question to them as we started our time together was:
Based on what you know about me and what I do what is your purpose/objective tonight and what would you like to accomplish in our time together? Then I asked the members of the committee to write down their answers. After a few minutes I asked each person on the committee to share their answers with me and the rest of the group.
After I give an overview of what I am going to be covering with you the next four weeks I am going to share why the question above has changed the entire direction of my ministry the last few years.
For the next several weeks I am going to share practical insights that I have learned through the years working with individuals, on staff at the church I serve as Discipleship Pastor and with thousands of churches and organizations across the country. I am going to share four steps that I came up with about twelve years ago that I believe any church or organization must implement in being effective in their ministries or programs or whatever you call processes that take people from one place to another. I am going to be primarily using what I have learned in implementing PLACE (both within my church and helping other churches implement PLACE) as a processes to help people discover how God has created them so they can be and do what God created them for in life and ministry. But again, these four steps are imperative no matter what the ministry, program or process you are trying to implement.
As I stated at the beginning of the article the question I asked last week at the beginning of my time with a pastor search committee changed the entire direction of my ministry. You might ask why? Glad you asked. I have assumed for years that the goal of a resource like PLACE was to accomplish the goals our leadership had established. Then I started asking at the beginning of teaching PLACE for each participant to write on the top of their PLACE Profile what their purpose/objective was for going through PLACE. I would then ask several to share with everyone their objective/purpose. When I coach those who have gone through PLACE I go over what they wrote when we started to teaching of PLACE. I tell them they can keep what they wrote, subtract from it, add to it or start all over from their initial purpose/objective. Most of the time they keep what they initially wrote or expound on it with a little more clarity. Rarely, but sometimes they start all over after going through the teaching of PLACE and even circumstances that have happened since completing the teaching of PLACE and their coaching session.
I have discovered when I help others achieve their purpose/objective then everyone wins. The person wins, the church wins and most importantly the Kingdom of God wins. And yes we do get lots of people engaged and involved in ministry within our church which is what most people who oversee a ministry like PLACE want to see happen and what leadership expects. But let me make clear. My focus is helping others fulfill their purpose and if that has nothing to do with serving within our church then I stay true to what God has revealed to me in helping people fulfill their purpose in using a resource like PLACE. So, let me end by asking you a question: In your ministry or if you are the one implementing PLACE what is your purpose? If you would like learn more about the four steps to Implementation and how they are used within the PLACE process click on the link below.