We wish there was a good class on delegation. Unfortunately, American pastors, who don’t have a plurality of equal-to-them elders functioning as a team together, tend to have a emperor complex. American pastors are infamous for being control freaks, micro managers, “my way or the highway” kind of leaders. By actions more than by actual words, the American pastor stereotype tells everyone around them, “I’m called to be the leader. I’m the visionary. I’m the one giving directions here.” It kind of smells like the attitudes Jesus warned His disciples against.
Delegation is something that happens when the pastor has a heart attack or he just really doesn’t want to do that thing that’s being delegated. Yet, if the church is to grow, delegation must happen. In fact, ironically, delegation is the very thing that facilitates church planting ministry and helps the burgeoning church to develop indigenous leaders.
It’s true that delegation means some degree of release of control. Things won’t be done in exactly the same manner or end up with exactly the same results as if you did them or you micro managed the stuffing out of it. However, it’s better to learn how to delegate so that you don’t have a heart attack, rather than have the heart attack force you to delegate.
Delegation is the art of persuading and communicating others to do a task or project for the good of the whole body. Delegation gives both responsibility and authority to others. Delegation also allows for the possibility of failure. Failure isn’t always bad, by the way. Through failure we all, including you, learn from experience.
Missions is one of the prime areas of ministry where you will be dependent on delegation to accomplish the education and mobilization of the church in a specialized area that you would not be able to accomplish on your own without neglecting other essential ministry priorities. You must find competent and proactive leaders and servants to carry the missions ministry of the church farther and better than you could.
It’s OK if you want to be involved. It’s OK for you to give others resources and ideas to fuel their progress. It’s not OK for you to micro manage and subjugate everyone in the missions team to do it your way. This section will help you with some ideas about how to effectively delegate in the area of missions. There might be some transferable principles into other areas of church ministry, as a bonus!
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