Can Staff Meetings Really Be A Blessing?
As we wind down our summer schedule and begin to embrace the reality of the autumn season with its more serious, focused schedule, I thought I would start things off with a joke about this week’s subject.
Does this have a painful ring of reality to it for those of you who have a regular dose of “death by meetings” experience? If so, I feel your pain and truly hope things improve for you this Fall.
So why am I bringing up “it’s just one of the things in life I need to deal with” life topics? Because I want to encourage you by sharing how I have experienced the other side of staff meeting life at New Covenant along with the good gospel fruit it produces by God’s grace.
Let me share some background with you. I have the “privilege” of being involved in three different staff meetings during the week. I say “privilege” because it really is one. My life experience has repeatedly confirmed that any hope of a “great” staff meeting experience is mainly about the quality of the people you interact with in any given meeting situation. Let me give you a quick thumbnail of each meeting dynamic so I can encourage you about the godly quality of our church staff.
On Tuesday mornings, Dan Huff, Donna Strand, and I meet to discuss the finance and operations of our church. One of the immediate blessings for Dan and I is observing all the capable, gifted ways Donna brings so many church serving hats to the table. We regularly pray and strategize together looking for ways we can improve and streamline office processes so we can better serve our pastoral staff and congregation. Our current big team challenge is the needed integration of new financial/website software into the annual budgeting process. By God’s grace, we look forward together expectantly (with our church treasurer and elder finance subcommittee) to a successful outcome in this area.
Later on Tuesday mornings, I meet at the Gospel Care Center with our two dedicated biblical counselors, David Sommer and Karen Aldridge. Each meeting has a different dynamic. Sometimes we pray about and/or discuss challenging counseling care scenarios that exist at the center. Other times, we minister to one another by sharing books, counseling articles, or conferences we have benefited from. One of the good “iron sharpening iron” fruit is we now want to edify you, the congregation. That is why the three of us have committed each month to sharing an article or a book review that we have personally benefited from. Be on the lookout for this monthly blog spot. Our hope is this material will help equip you as godly, wise counselors in your discipleship and gospel witness to others.
Last, but certainly not least, is our Tuesday afternoon pastoral staff meeting. Pastor Sunday capably leads our pastors, Dan Huff, Dan Leeper, and Patrick Havens in an encouraging time of team building interaction together. Although weekly ministry tasks and longer term team ministry goals are discussed, this is not the main focus of our meeting. Instead, our staff meeting focus rests on Christ and the beauty of His gospel. What a joyful, sweet time it is as we build one another up in our personal walk with the Lord, pray together, and encourage one another in our pursuit of the spiritual disciples. What a “privilege” to more fully experience the godly heart of our Pastors as they endeavor to lovingly lead and shepherd our flock… it has greatly impacted me this year!
This summer we have been studying and discussing together: Wisdom in Leadership – the How and Why of Leading the People You Serve by Craig Hamilton. It is a compendium of practical leadership topics that wisely helps us be more biblical and gospel centered servant leaders as a result. I highly recommend this leadership read. During your next church hallway discussion, may I suggest that you ask one of our pastors about one of the leadership topics they have been most impacted by in the Hamilton book.
So… can Staff Meetings be a blessing? My experience at New Covenant this year affirms that yes they can… but only by God’s good favor and grace… and that is no joke.
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