Saturday, January 24, 2009

The Grace Staff Culture (Part 2)

As I noted in my previous blog, it is essential that every staff member at Grace be sold out to "Meeting and Moving." It is the heartbeat of our church and thus must be the heartbeat of those that daily serve on staff at Grace.

I also noted that there are four "C's" that also define who we are as a team. When I was hired as one of the Pastor's at Grace back in 2007, Pastor Scott addressed each of these four C's with me.

The first "C" we look for in our current team and any potential team member is CHARACTER. I was recently reading a current article in my University's magazine (PBU TODAY) and Dr. Herbert Hirt stated this "Leaders must grow to spiritual maturity and reflect Jesus in order to be the model for those aspiring to grow up in Christ." It is my personal desire to reflect Christ in all that I do as I know that my life reflects both Him and the Grace Church family as one of its pastors. But, this is also my desire for our staff. We as the Grace team must seek to reflect Jesus in all that we do which means we must take seriously the call to be men and women of character. This article also shares some of these thoughts as I define character for our staff.

First, we must be skilled at what we do but not at the cost of caring for our church family and one another. I always marvel at the words of Paul when he states that Timothy was one of the only one's he saw who was genuinely concerned for the welfare of God's people (Philippians 2:20). Being a staff of character means we possess a genuine concern for the church family at Grace and one another. I'm always watching to see how our staff treats each other and the church family. I'm looking for staff members that are desirous to go the extra mile for each other not because they have to as part of their job but because they possess a genuine concern for their teammate.

Secondly, I believe our staff must be passionate about the Word of God. (2 Timothy 2:15) The study of God's Word is essential for the formation of a Christ like character. (2 Timothy 3:16-17) Every staff member must be actively engaged in the personal study of God's Word and be enthusiastic about it within our team. There is nothing more rewarding than to hear staff members talking Scripture within the office and looking together to see how it applies to their lives. It's amazing how little office gossip/chatter/negative talk takes place when our tongues are full of Scripture.

Thirdly, I believe Paul's advice to the young pastor Timothy also gives us a picture of what Christ like character looks like. We look to have a staff that seeks to live pure lives (2 Timothy 2:20-21). A clean vessel filled with the Spirit will be very effective for Christ. We will only be useful for God and for this church family if we strive to be men and women of purity. We must also be a staff that runs away from the lusts of the world and run after (pursue) right living (righteousness). (2 Timothy 2:22) I'll be the first to admit that I'm not perfect and neither is the Grace staff. But, the norm we demand is that of actively pursuing right living. That's why we look to hold each other accountable when we see sin. It's not because we don't like each other, but because we are committed to having every team member become more and more like Christ daily.

It is true that all churches must constantly wrestle with philosophy of ministry in light of cultural changes and realities. But, the one thing a church staff must never compromise on is having a team of people who seek to pursue a Christ like character. Thus the first "C" we call upon our entire staff to possess is CHARACTER! Check back soon for the next "C" we look for in our staff.

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