It’s Really Much Easier to Not Lead with Clarity at All

Let’s face it, there are much easier things to do than be a leader in the local church.

Especially easier than being a pastor leading toward a clear vision.

Pastors who are committed to pursuing God’s unique Great Commission call for their church face more than their share of obstacles. Last week, I had some time with three ministers from different parts of the country and varying denominational backgrounds who have all spent the last year in the complex work of leading with the simple clarity of a Vision Frame. These leaders related stories of transitioning staff members in conflict with the vision, and having hard conversations with high-capacity donors, and even watching core families leave the church over personal preferences that fell outside of the church’s defined strategy for making disciples.

However, even during difficult days, each pastor could see the value of clarity despite the high cost of leadership.

There are much easier things to do in the local church than to lead toward a clear vision. Come to think about it, it’s really much easier to not lead with clarity at all.

Here are 10 reasons it’s better to be unclear as a pastor:

1. Hard decisions never have to be made, because every idea is a good idea.
2. Staff meetings are more fun when you can laugh and talk about stuff,without the burden of execution.
3. You can always tell an anecdotal feel good story to refute any criticism, because who can argue with a salvation from 2003?
4. Doing everything and complaining about being busy, obviously makes youimportant and irreplaceable.
5. Besides, it takes too much work to grow and develop leaders, it’s much more simple to just do it yourself.
6. It keeps you from “getting too far ahead” of God… as if that’s even possible.
7. It keeps you dependent on the Holy Spirit, who evidently avoids spreadsheets and thoughtful planning.
8. It keeps you giving all the glory to Jesus when things go well, and confused on who to blame when they don’t.
9. Because the church is no place for business principles like direction, motivation and success measurements.
10. Finally, because there is always another church you can pastor, and you have at least 3 years of good message material.

If any of these reasons make you laugh just a bit uncomfortably, maybe it’s time for a leadership gut check. Are you willing to do what it takes, even when it’s not easy, to lead toward God’s vision for your church? Connect with an Auxano Navigator and start a conversation with our team.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Bryan Rose

As Lead Navigator for Auxano, Bryan Rose has a strong bias toward merging strategy and creativity within the vision of the local church and has had a diversity of experience in just about every ministry discipline over the last 12 years. With his experience as a multi-site strategist and campus pastor at a 3500 member multi-campus church in the Houston Metro area, Bryan has a passion to see “launch clarity” define the unique Great Commission call of developing church plants and campus, while at the same time serving established churches as they seek to clarify their individual ministry calling. Bryan has demonstrated achievement as a strategic thinker with a unique ability to infuse creativity into the visioning process while bringing a group of people to a deep sense of personal ownership and passion.

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COMMENTS

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Recent Comments
comment_post_ID); ?> I agree with your 3 must-haves. I would add that the rectors have to call on every member who attends, at least once a year. The existence of a "calling commitee" is just an excuse to avoid making the effort. This is part of #3. If a rector does not like to call on parishioners, then she/he should not be a rector, but should find a different ministry. Carter Kerns, former senior warden, Diocese of Eastern Oregon and lifelong Episcopalian Tel# 541-379-3124
 
— Carter Kerns
 
comment_post_ID); ?> Are there any reliable statistics about the percentage of church plants that fail after 3 years in the US?
 
— Jon Moore
 
comment_post_ID); ?> I am a senior citizen who has lived in many areas of the US, the farthest south being Virginia DC area. There are several church plants in the area--some failed, some doing well. One of the sadist failures was a plant in NW Washington near a large Presbyterian Church (I had been an elder in the church, so I knew the area) where changes in church doctrine was driving many away from the PCUSA churches. There were many mature Christians who lived in the area who were very willing to participate and give generously to the church. Its failure was a loss. The pastor and his wife lived in a VA suburb, wanted something that would appeal to their tastes, which included "praise music". There was a professional piano teacher and several people who had sung in choirs in the area. Their suggestions were completely ignored. Forget that there was joyous participation in singing hymns and silence by many for the praise music. The experienced church leaders that were attending were expected to seek the wisdom of the pastor who did not live in the area rather than have any role in leadership. There is another church plant in Northern Virginia that seems to be going the same way. My take: the pastors should get past their high-school and college days culture and get to know and appreciate the people of the community. Do not try to reproduce Intervarsity or Campus Crusade. Hymns are not a sin and "uneducated" (never graduated from college) should not be ignored as uninformed or stupid. People who have served in and/or live in the area are needed in leadership and not just to serve coffee and give. We all need to pray together and serve God in the community in which there is to be a plant. Glenna Hendricks
 
— Glenna Hendricks
 

Clarity Process

Three effective ways to start moving toward clarity right now.