Category Archives: Work

Conflict-photo

Facing Conflict at work? 6 Skills to help you through

One of the hardest things, I deal with is helping worship leaders work through conflict and brokenness in their churches.  If you have spent any time around the church you will realize that conflict resolution skills and experience are a must for a team.  People will hurt you! People will disagree with you! People will sin!

The challenge for the worship leader is to develop and maintain a healthy relationships with all the staff that he works with regularly as well as the others in leadership at his church.  Whether you serve at a church of 100 or 4,000, the skills that will help you survive the certainty of conflict are essential.

Here is my short list.

Meet regularly with a colleague outside your situation. Don’t do this alone!  If you have opportunity to meet with other like minded leaders do it.  Don’t meet with an opposite sex leader, recipe for disaster there.  You don’t need to confide in you co-worker or assistant.  The best place to begin isn’t your wife either!  Take time to find another worship leader or person you trust and begin to talk regularly about the stresses and challenges of your work.

 

Humble Yourself! Remember The enemy is roaring lion!  You are a target! Don’t ever forget that!  The evil one wants to make you completely unfruitful and unproductive, angry, hurt, bitter and toxic.  Remember and memorize this verse.

Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God so that at the proper time he may exalt you, casting all your anxieties on him, because he cares for you. Be sober-minded; be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour. Resist him, firm in your faith, knowing that the same kinds of suffering are being experienced by your brotherhood throughout the world. And after you have suffered a little while, the God of all grace, who has called you to his eternal glory in Christ, will himself restore, confirm, strengthen, and establish you. To him be the dominion forever and ever. Amen. (1 Peter 5:6-11 ESV)

Learn about conflict  read a few good books and take a class or two!

The Peacemaker: A Biblical Guide to Resolving Personal Conflict
Related Article from Peacemaker Ministries: Accountability: The Mark of a Wise and Protected Leader

 

Develop good boundaries No one needs to be taken advantage of.  If you find yourself, in a hurtful and abusive situation you need to know how to recognize it and deal with it.

Boundaries: Henry Cloud and John Townsen

Safe People: 

Necessary Endings

 

Remember Sin and conflict is not always intentional!  One of the most important things I have learned over the years is that people are sinners!  People and leadership teams don’t think! People and leadership teams are unwise  and sometimes People and leadership teams are intentionally sinful!

One of the best books to read about his concept is Bold Love by Dan Allender.

 

Choose Joy! You will grow to be like Christ!  I hate it when i grumble to my wife about some issue that is bothering me. (yes I’m also prone to talk to my wife)  She looks at me and says, “you’re gonna be so shiny.”  As much as it bothers me, she is right!

Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness. And let steadfastness have its full effect, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing. (James 1:2-4 ESV)

It is my prayer that you never have to encounter a situation at your church and ministry that causes conflict and pain, but you will!  Don’t despair!

Jesus hasn’t left his throne! He is praying for you! You are not alone!

 

Redeemer Arts Video – Get Inspired

I was inspired at the vision and work from Artists who are engaging their culture and work.
I hope this helps you consider how you can pursue God’s calling on your life in such a way that allows others to notice the work of Christ in you!

Matthew 5:16 “let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven.”

Redeemer Arts from Redeemer Video on Vimeo.

Why Bother Creating! It’s all gonna Burn!

life from death tree image

What you do in the Lord is not in vain.  You are not oiling the wheels of a machine that’s about to roll over a cliff. You are not restoring a great painting that’s shortly going to be thrown on the fire. You are not planting roses in a garden that’s about to be dug up for a building site. You are- strange though it may seem, almost as hard to believe as the resurrection itself- accomplishing something that will be come in due course part of God’s new world.  Every act of love, gratitude, and kindness; every work of art of music inspired by the love of God and delight in the beauty of creation; every minute spent teaching a severely handicapped child to read of to walk; every act of care and nurture, of comfort and support, for one’s fellow human beings and for that matter one’s fellow nonhuman creatures; and of course every prayer, all Spirit-led teaching, every deed that spreads the gospel, builds up the church, embraces and embodies holiness rather than corruption, and makes the  name of Jesus honored in the world – all of this will find its way, through the resurrecting power of God, into the new creation that God will one day make.  That is the logic of the  mission of God.  God’s recreation of his wonderful world, which began with the resurrection of Jesus and continues mysteriously as God’s people live in the risen Christ and in the power of his Spirit, means that what we do in Christ and by the Spirit in the present is not wasted. It will last all the way into God’s new world.  in face, it will be enhanced there. Surprised by Hope – N.T. Wright

Sometimes I wonder how we would live “in light of God’s restoration of all things” rather than with a view toward “all things burning up” viewpoint.

The Re-Creation of a new heavens and new earth has at it’s root the promise of a New Eden, a “New Heaven and New Earth.”  Many Christians do not have a complete view of what God will Re-Create after Christ’s return.  Many have have considered images of angels and harps and think we spend eternity in heavenly cloud like spaces!  When scripture points to a Heavenly City (Revelation 21:1-14) that connects both the New Heaven and New Earth.

We will be part of a new creation that will reflect the glory of God.  The very things in this life that we have pursued and created that reflect God’s glory will last!  Wright says, “all of this will find its way, through the resurrecting power of God, into the new creation that God will one day make.”

As N.T. Wright points out in the quote what we do here does have eternal impact.  This includes creating great artwork, writing great music, teaching children to read and grasp the wonder of this world, helping the needy, bringing hope to those who are hopeless, caring for others and a multitude of other things.

We just finished celebrating Easter.  The Resurrection is about new birth.  It is about the power of God over death and destruction.  When I consider the impact of Jesus’ Resurrection, I must also consider that he finishes his time here on earth promising to give power for all believers to proclaim the Good News and continue the mission.

We live in light of the power of the risen Christ, in us by the ministry of the Holy Spirit that Jesus also promised.

So what does this mean for me today, this week, this month?  I look at the moments ahead and seek to honor God by worshipping Him in my calling!

I do my work to the glory of God.  I love my family to the Glory of God.  I talk to my neighbor about the glory of God!  I live with a different set of rules than the rest of society that they would see the glory of God!

Each moment here is not to be wasted! It has value! I don’t do lousy work thinking it will all burn up anyway!  I don’t destroy the creation of God or mistreat its creatures because all that matters are the souls of those who truth in Jesus. Our calling in this life is to live by the power of God in light of the Resurrection.

“God’s recreation of his wonderful world, which began with the resurrection of Jesus and continues mysteriously as God’s people live in the risen Christ and in the power of his Spirit, means that what we do in Christ and by the Spirit in the present is not wasted.”

We can live with expectation of Jesus return but we also have to be faithful doing what our master has left us to do!  So go out there and live in such a way that others see Jesus!  They look at your work and go wow!  They wonder why you live with such a humble and yet bold spirit. Sure, we look eagerly for the Lord’s return and live with urgency and prayer for Revival and for many to come to Christ.  We cannot however let a view of end times lead us to a place of apathy about our lives and work here and now!

What if people who lived in the last few centuries had exclaimed, “Oh well, Jesus is going to return; all things are gonna burn up; there is no need for Colleges, Universities, Hospitals and other great institutions.” No they wanted to see a better world here!  We need to live fully today with hope for our future! We don’t know when Jesus is returning! So build, play, write, sing, create, work, have families, build schools, and do many noble things!  Create new ways to make the world a better place! Free the millions in slavery! Find a way to provide clean water! Discover a new way to provide clean energy!  Find a way to communicate the gospel to places now closed to the gospel!  We have great work to do!

Jesus Resurrection and Ascention hasn’t just left us here peering at the sky wondering what to do next.  The call is pretty clear.

Your work and life are not in vain!  You have purpose!  That means following the mission of God into a life that leaves a lasting impact. Full of good things that will not burn up and be destroyed point to the glory of God!

Read more about God’s Calling in “The Call” by Os Guinness