A good friend of mine, Scott Livermore, works with Student Venture in Indianapolis and is a coach with the Coaching Center. He recently wrote an article for the Coaching Report called “Give it Away.”. I thought this offered great insight for those of us involved in multiplying student and volunteer ownership.
Give it Away
You make plans for your ministry. Your ideas are great and you have the team and momentum to pull them off. So many of the things that have to be done are so simple you can do them in your sleep. I have a question for you: Why would you do them for the umpteenth time instead of taking some extra time and training someone else to step in.
You might argue that there is a cost to taking the time to find someone, get them to agree, explain the process, establish quality control and then check back with them. I would agree with you. It does take time to set up and hand off the jobs that are the backbone of campus ministry excellence. Why would you pass the baton?
- Demonstrates belief: What says more than challenging a faithful young man or woman to help you in an area that will advance the ministry? Your statement to them is one that will help them see themselves as God sees them. You will help them begin to develop a God confidence as they see some of their God given talents being used for the Kingdom!
- Invites creativity: A fresh set of eyes on an old design or an annual event may be just what the doctor ordered. You may be good, but it is possible that your giving someone else a chance to insert their giftedness, on a project or task, may be the best thing you do all year!
- Develops Leadership: Leadership is merely a small step away from handling increasing responsibility. The student you hand the baton is on their way to becoming a leader in your ministry. What do you mean by that? Faithfulness and “full-of-faith-ness” is the stuff that God honors when He calls His servants into leadership. Now, it may be a long distance between creating a flyer and leading a small group, but the road there begins with the first step!
- Fosters Stewardship: How many great ideas have you designed that created no excitement among your students? If we do them they might not come, but if they do them they will make sure that students come. The most powerful invitation to an event that I have ever heard came from a student who said: I am speaking tonight at our meeting about my relationship with Christ. Would you come with me? That could not have happened without someone being willing to trust, train and empower that student to be a steward of the meeting through their involvement in it. Are you having trouble getting students excited about the ministry? Give them an opportunity to be involved!
- Dividing the Work Multiplies Your Time: There is a learning curve but eventually you will notice the tasks that used to take so much of your time are now off your plate and in the hands of faithful men and woman who are growing in their leadership. Your goal should be to only do the things that you can do and start handing over everything else.
God has called you to lead. He has given you a whole pasture of potential talent that merely needs to be trusted, trained and turned loose. You are the spokesperson and vision caster who helps build the top leaders of the ministry. Others can make flyers, buy refreshments, do games and all the other tasks that seem to require so much of your time.
Enjoy the thrill of seeing God at work in the heart’s of your disciples!
Scott pointed to several links at the end of his letter. One was to an article called “Dare to Multiply”. A good reminder that Jesus poured his life into a few who would pass it on to others. Also the apostle Paul was intentional about selecting future leaders and imparting vision and skills.