It’s Sunday Morning. We’ve gathered together to worship, pray and study as a church family. It should be all bliss and tranquility right? Well, you’d sure hope so, at least for the most part, but in the church family, like any family, you’ll have the occasional spat from time to time, and a little planning ahead can go along way.
My church uses an elementary school for Sunday services, so each week we have to tear down and set up chairs, lights, sound system, kids church, coffee, etc. If you are or have been a part of church like this then you understand. It’s a lot to get done in a short amount of time and it can be stressful. Added to this, as any worship leader who’s been around a while knows, are the out of left field requests for set changes or a song that no one has practiced, and you have a situation where you can easily say something you’ll regret. How do I know? Because I’ve done it, I’ve messed up, and had to mend fences over things that could have been avoided if I’d been more prepared. So here’s some thoughts.
-Leave it for later: If something is going on that’s bugging you, annoying you, or you just think is plain wrong, then if at all possible leave it for later. There’s a lot going on and there’s probably a better time then 30 minutes before service starts to deal with it.
-Make sure later happens: If you leave it for later but then never deal with the issue then it’ll build up, and build up, until you explode or snap at moment you didn’t mean to and loose the chance to make a valid point because you said something at the wrong time in the wrong way.
-Generally say yes: If you’re pastor/leadership ask for a last minute change, say yes. If there is just no way it’s going to work I tell them (i.e. I don’t have the people, or we don’t know the song, etc) but otherwise I go with it, and if it’s an issue then I can talk with them later about how rough or awkward or whatever it was.
-Have Grace/Show Grace: If I’m annoyed at someone higher up the leadership chain I need to remind myself that it’s not my call. If it’s someone who’s under my leadership I need to remember how frustrating that can be and that I have a responsibility to be an example of grace to them. They aren’t going to grow in social skills or musical ability if I’m snapping at them instead of leading them.
-When you screw up: When you say something in a time, place or way that you shouldn’t have then be humble, admit it, and move forward. Jesus has reattached ears that His disciples have cut off before and He can do it again. Every thought I’ve shared I’ve gathered from mistakes I’ve made, and even if you have a clear thinking in this area, it doesn’t mean that you won’t have to apologize at some point for a mistake in this area. We are all works of grace in process.